Welcome to my Art Blog! I paint or draw most weekdays and sometimes finish a painting a day. I fondly call them my "Postcards from Paradise" because it's such a beautiful place the Lord made here for us.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

"Slice of Bright" Panoramic Landscape Painting

I'm enjoying using a wide or tall format for some recent works, including this new piece. The panorama made for a dramatic statement about that glow at the horizon contrasted with the dark storm clouds and shadowed landscape.
Original oil 4"x12", framed
©2012 Diana Moses Botkin


Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Spring Landscapes

"Evening Storms" Oil 5"x7" unframed
©2012 Diana Moses Botkin

Weather this time of year can be quite varied in northern Idaho. We might have a couple of warm sunny days that are perfect for working in the garden and then a week of overcast cooler days with storms. The rain clouds can be quite spectacular, like these in the painting above.
Sunny evenings like the one pictured below, with bright color on the green landscape, invite outdoor dining and giving of thanks for the Lord's many blessings.

"Late Afternoon Color"
Oil 3.5"x5" framed

©2012 Diana Moses Botkin


Monday, May 28, 2012

Remembering Omaha Beach in Normandy

"Normandy" Oil 5"x7"
©2005 Diana Moses Botkin


In 2005 on Memorial Day, my family and I visited Omaha Beach in Normandy.

The thousands upon thousands of crosses and stars of David were a stark testimony to us of the blood
spilled there on D-day and a reminder of the many many lives sacrificed in the cause of liberty.

Although most of the crosses and stars of David bore the names of soldiers and their home state, many of the markers simply read:

At the Memorial, we met an old man and learned he was British and had been in the D-Day invasion. He told us he returns every year to remember... and lamented that so many young people don't care.

The bunkers on the beach still stand, another witness to the lives lost, and the ground fairly cries out with the blood spilled there, but the sea does not remember.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Two Recent Plein Air Paintings

Last week I did several pieces on location in the Palouse, even though the weather was somewhat grey. 

The challenge to make an interesting painting in various conditions is a good opportunity to learn something.

Not all the paintings I did are worth showing, or trying to save, but I tweaked these two small pieces a bit. A little more color and contrasts helped them work better.

(above) "Dawn Stirs" Oil 4"x6" unframed ©2012 Diana Moses Botkin


(left) "Morning Blues"
Oil 5"x7" unframed

©2012 Diana Moses Botkin

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

May Painting Challenge: Indigenous Trees

Our Challenge this month was named by Mary Maxam, who asked us to paint a tree from our area.

Although I have done this numerous times, I decided to paint an elongated vertical format painting for something a little different.

Near my house is this group of tall conifers. The Grand Fir on the right side of the painting is fascinating to me and I have painted it more than once. It's especially lovely with the late afternoon rosy light shining on it.

"Reaching for the Sky" 
Oil on hardboard
©2012 Diana Moses Botkin


left) "Palo Verde Sunset" Oil 14"x18" ©2012 Becky Joy
right) "West of Healing Springs" Oil on Linen Panel, 11x14" ©2012 Vicki Ross
(below ) "Dogwood" Oil on Ampersand panel, 8" x 10" ©2012 Mark Adams

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

"Fall Fashion", a Fetching Feline

It always feels good to have a special painting finished. I've been working on this commissioned piece awhile and it is ready to be shipped to my collector now. I'm celebrating a little!

This soft orange tabby cat in the leaves looked like he was attempting some autumn camouflage. I originally had more leaves in this painting, but wound up taking out a lot of them because there was not much compositional interest.

"Fall Fashion" Original oil 9"x12"
©2012 Diana Moses Botkin

Please contact me if you'd like to commission a special painting. Cats, people and places are favorite subjects.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Shipping Article Finished

My article on how to pack and ship art is now with my editor, along with photos. The piece gives details on sending drawings and paintings using several methods. It also compares shipping companies and lists suppliers for packing materials.

My previous article on the subject dealt primarily with framed art. (I won a writing award for that one, which was a first for me.) This new piece expands that information and includes instructions on packing unframed works on paper, or unstretched paintings on canvas, rolled in tubes for mailing.

Look for it in the September issue of Professional Artist Magazine.

This technical article was not an easy write. Even gathering information was tricky, especially for shipper specifications. One important bit of insurance info that was not revealed anywhere, I had to find out the hard way myself, first-hand, when an overseas package was lost last year.