Saturday, December 31, 2011

Not Afraid of Heights

A lot of people are afraid of heights. Not me, I'm afraid of widths.- Steven Wright

A vigorous five-mile walk will do more good for an unhappy but otherwise healthy adult than all the medicine and psychology in the world.- Paul Dudley White

A friend is one who knows you and loves you just the same. - Elbert Hubbard
... and I thank you all for that :-)

It takes a long time to grow an old friend.- John Leonard

Further studies on sunflowers .... they are so bright and cheery

Oil on canvas panel 8x10

Friday, December 30, 2011

Mind over matter

Some misfortunes we bring upon ourselves; others are completely beyond our control. But no matter what happens to us, we always have some control over what we do about it. - Suzy Szasz

Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don't mind, it doesn't matter.- Mark Twain

I couldn't wait for success, so I went ahead without it. - Jonathan Winters

A sense of humor is the ability to understand a joke - and that the joke is oneself. - Clifton Paul Fadiman

To be polite is to do and say
The kindest things in the kindest way - Sophia Bronson Titterington

OK... so it looks like yesterdays post... but it is not ... I am still practising sunflowers so you may see more of them here from time to time ... this one is actually on a larger canvas

Oil on canvas board 12x16

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Keep on Dreaming

There are no great people in this world, only great challenges which ordinary people rise to meet. -William Frederick Halsey, Jr.

Also, sometimes somewhat trivial challenges may seem great to the ordinary person - Unocchio

A man is not old until regrets take place of dreams - John Barrymore

May you never get old.... dream on my friend

There is no duty we do so much underrate as the duty of being happy. By being happy we sow anonymous benefits upon the world, which remain unknown even to ourselves, or when they are disclosed, surprise nobody so much as the benefactor - Robert Louis Stevenson

Always do your duty ... be happy ... spread good cheer.

We are planning a painting class for the benefit of home schoolers. This is the picture we plan to paint.

Oil on canvas board 9x12

Monday, December 26, 2011

Hiking above 7000 ft

A word to the wise ain't necessary - it's the stupid ones that need the advice.
Bill Cosby

A stockbroker urged me to buy a stock that would triple its value every year. I told him, "At my age, I don't even buy green bananas." - Claude Pepper
I understand this one very well :-)

Perseverance is not a long race; it is many short races one after the other.... same as hiking up a mountain trail is a series of short walks and stops for taking fotos

Yesterday we went hiking in the High Sierras ... beginning at Spooner lake and heading on up to Marlette Lake. It was a great day to be out-of-doors enjoying the fresh air and sunshine. We hiked about 8 miles. Take a look at some of our views:

Kris & Baron at the beginning of the hike .... those coats will soon come off ... we all way overdressed.

The trail to Marlette Lake from Spooner Lake

There were numerous rest areas .. this one had a chair cut from a tree stump.

We came upon several aspen groves along the way.

Near the top of the trail we looked back .. those distant mountains are on the other side of Lake Tahoe

Higher up the trail we found some lovely meadows.

Along the trail were several crystal cleat mountain streams ... the higher ones had ice on the top ... thick ice ... but we could hear the water flowing underneath.

At the top of the trail, just before descending to Marlette Lake there was a convenient rest spot. The ol geezer parked on a log in the warm sun and ate his sandwich while the kids went on down partway to the lake side. the last mile was on a north slope and the trail was covered with ice and snow.

Here we see the appraoch to Marlette Saddle with the high ridge to the East.

This was our first peek at Marlette Lake

Had to take a closer look.... awesome.

Kris coming back up the trail from the lake.

Hope you enjoyed this short tour ... wish you had been with us.
Best to you all.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Anyone can start today

We have to believe in free-will. We've got no choice. -Issac Bashevis Singer

Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending - Maira Robinson

Sometimes artists paint something then put it away or hang it on the wall to look at every day... then they see things to improve, take it off the wall and paint more on it,,,, then hang it back on the wall and look at it every day .. only soon to realize that something more may be added to it to enhance the pleasure of the view .... life is like that .... if we continue to observe we will find things to make it better... to add improvements ... to make it better.

Oil on canvas panel 9x12 framed improved over time

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Dream on

Intellectual growth should commence at birth and cease only at death. Albert Einstein
Dream as if you'll live forever, live as if you'll die today.  James Dean quotes 

It is winter. There may be some snow flowers out there... the sun is shining brightly ..... it is a good day
We were just dreaming of those bright and cheery sunflowers that smile down on us at the end of the growing season. There are a couple of fake ones sitting on my desk to keep the memories alive ... I am going to paint a series of bright sun flowers... it's all about color and cheerfulness.

Smile. It's a good day :-)

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Thanks for a great day

So many gods, so many creeds,
So many paths that wind and wind;
When just the art of being kind
is all the sad word needs. - Ella Wheeler Wilcox

It's good to take a day off and visit nature.

Today was an outdoors day... a day for hiking and exploring .... a day to smell the sage and the big pines .... today was a "trip to Lake Tahoe" day .. whoopee !!!

The sun was shining and the weather was mild for December ... even at the higher altitudes. Who could ask for anything more.

Please enjoy some of the pictures from the day:

Big Tree Country Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park

Spooner Lake - frozen

Snow on the edge of Spooner Lake

A little snow on the west side of Spooner Lake


Look close to see the beaver's house on the West shore of Spooner Lake

Rocky shoreline of West Lake Tahoe

Beautiful emerald Bay of Lake Tahoe

Happy tourists visiting the Emerald Bay area of Lake Tahoe recording memories of their visit

History of the Backcountry

Beautiful mountain vistas, stunning aerial views of Lake Tahoe, abundant wildflowers and over 50 miles of trails and dirt roads make the 13,000 acre backcountry a favorite destination for hikers, bikers, and horseback riders.

View of Marlette Lake, a breakfast spot In the Beginning...

Prior to the 1850's the primary visitors to the backcountry were the Washo Indians.   For thousands of years the Washo lived a very mobile life, migrating in the summer from valleys east of the Carson Range to Lake Tahoe to catch fish, hunt small game, and harvest seeds, roots and berries.

The Washo lived harmoniously with nature, had strong traditions and beliefs, and were gifted craftspeople, creating some of the most beautiful and diverse baskets in North America.   The arrival of white settlers in the mid 1800's marked the end of the Washo's lifestyle.   Commercial fisheries were established at Tahoe and the surrounding mountains were stripped of wood to provide lumber for the Comstock.

The Mining Boom(1860-1900)

As gold and silver mining at Virginia City and Gold Hill grew, enormous amounts of timber and water were needed to supply the cities and mines. This insatiable appetite spurred the creation of Marlette Lake, Hobart Reservoir, Spooner Lake and an intricate system of flumes and pipelines (The Marlette-Hobart Water System)that today is a National Civil Engineering Landmark. The box flume that carried water (not timber) from Marlette Lake Hobart Laketo Tunnel Creek Station is now the site of the popular Marlette Flume Trail.

This flume and another from the north combined and entered a 4000' tunnel which emptied on the east side of the Carson Range.   It then joined the key pipeline of the Comstock, the Inverted Siphon.   This high pressure pipeline brought water to a reservoir near Virginia City and could deliver up to 10 million gallons/day.   Amazingly, this pipeline still works, although the water supplied now primarily comes from Hobart Reservoir and the Red House diversions.   Red House is the last remaining flume maintenance station and was rebuilt about 1910 after a devastating flood that claimed two lives.  As the Comstock declined, limited livestock grazing replaced timber interests in the early 1900's.  The forest slowly returned but the environmentally disastrous activities of the Comstock years are still being felt today.

The Backcountry TodayNorth Canyon trail the Fall

Land acquisitions in the 1960's from the Whittell estate formed the bulk of the 12,242 acres currently owned by the State of Nevada.

The trail to Marlette Lake via North Canyon Road is the easiest access into the back-country.   A steeper access is available at Tunnel Creek Road.   The one time millpond, Spooner Lake, now offers fishing and is surrounded by a peaceful, attractive natural area that provides opportunities for walking and nature study in the spring, summer and fall.  The most sought-after trails in the backcountry are the historic Marlette Flume Trail and the Tahoe Rim TrailMarlette Lake during the Fall.


Hobart Campground is a new five site primitive facility with tables, grills, and a vault toilet.

Spooner Outdoor Company

Since 1986,our concessionaire,by permit, has been providing groomed ski trails, equipment rentals, ski lessons and backcountry cabin accommodations.   Spooner Outdoor Company is also now providing a range of summer services including mountain bike rentals, highway shuttle service and cabin rentals.

Tahoe Rim Trail

In 1981, a unique partnership was formed between the US Forest Service, Nevada State Parks and a volunteer organization, the Tahoe Rim Trail Assoc.   Twenty years later the dream was realized with the official completion of The Rim Trail in 2001.   Much remains to be done, however, and volunteers are urged to contact the Tahoe Rim Trail office at 775-298-0012.   The work of management, maintenance and enhancement of this wonderful trail is ongoing...

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Every Day .......

Every day, in every way, I am getting better and better.-Emile Coue'

Don't worry; pay special attention to what you eat (you are what you eat); take time out to meditate and think on good things; be kind and courteous to all you meet today; exercise according to your needs; go slow and easy - maintain peace and tranquility; manage stress...... these simple things will give your life a good lift and you will be happier for it.

Every year Carson City has an event called The Rendezvous. There is live music suited for the occasion; food geared specifically for the event; folks dressed up in historic costumes. It is a bit of history replayed.
I did a charcoal study of a little girl that was part of the event.

Charcoal on smooth newsprint 12x16

Thursday, December 15, 2011

To find a friend

To find a friend one must close one eye. To keep him -- two. -Norman Douglas

What we call Luck
is simply Pluck,
and doing things over and over;
Courage and Will,
Perseverance and Skill -
are the four leaves of Luck's clover - The Book of Good Cheer

.Aspen Valley Canyon in the Fall

Oil on canvas panel 12x16

Monday, December 12, 2011

Be of Good Cheer

The cheerful live longest in years, and afterwards in our regards. Cheerfulness is the offshoot of goodness - Boves

To give pleasure to a single heart by a kind act is better than a thousand head-bowings in prayer - Saadi

Do something good for someone today.

oil on canvas board 8x10

Pansies again

Check up each week on the progress you are making. Ask yourself what mistakes you have made, what improvement, what lessons you have learned for the future. - Dale Carnegie

I feel like life is so special and so great, every year I feel like I learn more, and I grow, and I think it's exciting to grow up. - Gisele Bundchen

So, with observation, help and critiques  I went back and added some changes and improvements. It's better now.... even if not award winning, pansies are such happy little guys.

Oil on canvas pad 6x10

Friday, December 9, 2011

One a Day

ONE A DAY - Make one person happy each day and in forty years you have made 14,600 people happy for a little time ... and in 80 years?

Now that is success in the best of terms.

No entertainment is so cheap as reading, nor any pleasure so lasting. -Lady Mary Wortley Montagu

Oil on canvas board 9 x 12

...... and yes, I ate it afterwards :-)

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Life must have its meed of pleasure

Clouds may come, but clouds must go,
And they have a silver lining
For beyond them all, you know,
Either sun or moon is shining
So with trouble; 'tis quite plain
Time at last will take its measure;
Rainbows follow after rain,
Life must have it's meed of pleasure - F.A.W.

oil on canvas panel 6 x 8

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

The sun is shinning

Somewhere on this great earth the sun is always shinning ...  and just as sure as you live it will sometimes shine on you - Myrtle Reed

Oil on masonite panel 8 x 10

Tuesday, December 6, 2011


The man who radiates good cheer, who makes life happier wherever he meets it, is always a man of vision and of faith - from the book of Good Cheer

Oil on canvas panel 8 x 10

To be wronged is nothing unless you continue to remember it. -Confucius

Monday, December 5, 2011

Happiness held is the seed; happiness shared is the flower. ~Author Unknown

"Good nature is worth more than knowledge, more than money, more than honor..."
-- Henry Ward Beecher

Even if happiness forgets you a little bit, never completely forget about it. ~Jacques Prévert

The best way to cheer yourself up is to try to cheer somebody else up. ~Mark Twain

Happiness often sneaks in through a door you didn't know you left open. ~John Barrymore

Oil on canvas pad 5 x 10

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Who's your friend?

Friendship with oneself is all important, because without it one cannot be friends with anyone else. -Eleanor Roosevelt

We hope this has been a happy week for you and that you, your family and friends enjoyed a grand Thanksgiving holiday. Having all this special food always makes us feel better. We had excellent weather here also.

In note of having the mind on food I had to this one.... watermelon and grapes have slipped out of season... I will miss them ... this painting will remind me that they will be coming back ... and I will be waiting :-)

Best to you all

Oil on Canvas pad about 8x10

Sunday, November 6, 2011

“A cloudy day is no match for a sunny disposition.”

“When we seek to discover the best in others, we somehow bring out the best in ourselves.”
both quotes from William Arthur Ward

A light dusting of snow the past couple days turns our world into a sparkling, glowing gem .... it is so nice ..... I can say that because I am cozy warm inside ... I suspect those who must work outside right now my have a slightly different take on things :-)

Painting still life is always fun... especially when it's food. I like painting food.... there is something so personal about it.

You smile and make this a good day for you and yours.

Oil on canvas 8x10

Thursday, November 3, 2011

The way things turn out

Things turn out best for people who make the best of the way things turn out. -Anon

Practicing painting and drawing sometimes works out best when we practice on ourselves.... then no one is offended.... so I practiced on my own mug from fotos taken at the Reno Portrait Society yesterday. they all got to paint and draw yesterday.  Maybe tomorrow I will paint it in oils.

So for today, make the best of the way things turn out :-)

Charcoal on smooth newsprint 14x18

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

One Ol Geezer had a Farm - E - I - E - I -O

No one is useless in this world who lightens the burden of it for anyone else. -Charles Dickens

So today I made life better for a group of artists ... even tho I would rather have been painting :-)
Don't I really look like an Ol' farmer sitting there?

Years ago one of my daughters went to modeling school and was a model ... I might as well follow in her footsteps. Who wudda thot.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Sometimes good things happen

Long-range studies imply that doing something with other people, especially something for them, is the most powerful of all stimuli to longevity and health.-Jon Poppy

Sharing what you have is more important than what you have. -Albert M. Wells, Jr.

... and I believe that .... so in light of sharing I put together a series of art classes... once a week for four weeks... to share some of the info that has been shared with me.

The first class was attended by four ladies ... there is one more who intends to be there for class 2. The ones in attendance for the first class were a fine group of very educated and talented artists. The class was well received and generated  some very fine compliments for which I am very grateful.... best of all, I was able to share with them some information and techniques which, on the most part, was entirely new to them. We all had a terrific time.
Even if all the information presented was not new, going back to the basics is still a very worthwhile endeavor. We can not review the basics too much.
Of course I worked very hard preparing for  the class ... many hours of study... many hours of internet research and documentation .... many hours drawing and preparing demos and examples. It is my great pleasure to be able to share. I want to be sure to have something worthwhile for everyone. Personally I feel their level of artistic skills is far ahead of mine which makes them able to take this information and run with it ... this information and technique will certainly help them produce even better art. .. it is something they will never forget.
The class was a definite success.

Generally my artwork is something that only mom and I enjoy ....  however..... occasionally someone else actually likes it.

The piece below was entered in the Nevada Artists Association (NAA)  Fall show which is running as we speak. The artists' reception will be on 12 November 2011. Evidently the judge liked my piece well enough to award it first place ... the blue ribbon ... and cash !! .... and yesterday someone walked in and viewed the Fall Show and bought my piece. I really appreciate the vote of confidence. They are so kind to me. Thanks folks.

Meanwhile I am busy drawing and painting ... who knows... perhaps something else worthwhile may come off the easel.... nevertheless .. I am having fun painting and drawing.

Yeh, you saw this before on the blog but now it's gone  :-) .... Janet, we hope you will enjoy this for a long time.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Fire in the hills

Nobody grows old by merely living a number of years. People grow old only be deserting their ideals. Years may wrinkle the skin, but to give up interest wrinkles the soul. -Douglas MacArthur

The protestors are still out there so I had to sketch one of those happy souls... didn't bother with the message though ... who cares ... I don't think it's going to change things for the better this time

Fall has come and almost gone .... the Aspen trees were yellow for only a few days... hard to believe... they normally stay yellow a lot longer.

The Forest Service is up there burning  debris again ... last year I think they let it get out of control and had to call in air support to bomb the fire ... let's hope they do a little better this year.

I get out for a walk every day ... especially during this fine weather ... to day it was a bike ride up the Franktown hill. Never an end to the beauty around here. Following is the picture tour including smoke from the fire ... and a little haze elsewhere that they created.