In the early 70’s I rented an apartment near Cleveland Circle in Boston.


The kitchen was narrow with high ceilings. A large window allowed the morning sunlight to pour past the potted herbs onto the glass doors of the cupboards, the counters and the floor.  The night I painted the walls bright orange and the cupboards fire engine red, I dropped into bed with a migraine.  I thought it was from the colors I’d chosen in too small a room.  Most likely, it was from the fumes.

Next morning, I awoke to the most cheerful kitchen I’d ever experienced.  The following year, I moved to a studio/loft space where I repeated the red and orange interior decor wherever possible … the bathroom I constructed and the one wall that wasn’t brick.  The memories of those days flooded back to me while painting this morning’s drawing, a sketch of Mike’s kitchen in Mountain View last month.  I threw the die and came up with the color scheme Analogous with One Complement.  The dominant color was to be orange/yellow.  As I remembered the effect of the fire engine red paint, my orange/yellow counter top became more of a red/orange.

Artist Trading Card – Morning Sketch: Sliced Apple, drawn in ink with fountain pen, followed (weeks later) with watercolor.

Just prior to writing this morning’s post, I read today’s Robert Genn Twice-Weekly Letter, What Turn’s You On?  It is a perfect fit with today’s post.

Backyard Travels

Yesterday afternoon, while painting (again) the trees and shadows of my backyard, I found myself distracted.  The light was uninteresting and I couldn’t simplify the pattern of bare branches enough to satisfy me.  Without realizing it I had added wind-blown clouds to a cloudless sky and patches of color to the shadow patched ground.  My focus returned.  With a smile on my face I looked to the landscape around me for information I could add to the imaginary landscape evolving on my wood panel.  Where did the shapes and colors come from?

Apples for Miguel

Maybe from the patterns of the apples Dine arranged on the table for Miguel.  He eats at least five each day!

Washington Wash Hanging on Clothesline

Maybe from the colorful wash I saw hanging on my way to Gibson’s Gym.  I drove around the block, parked my car and walked three blocks back to grab this photo.  I’m grateful for cell phone cameras!

Maybe it is the memory of the rapeseed field in the south of France.  Ahhhhh …. to return to Provence …..

There are thousands of images stored somewhere in my brain.  All I have to do is acknowledge them.  What fun!

Painting: Oil on wood panel

Palette: Titanium White, yellow ochre, cadmium yellow, burnt sienna, cadmium red light, french ultramarine blue, pthatho blue, viridian.