Friday, February 25, 2011

Drawing with wild color

A portrait of Karen Lynn Ingalls • © 2011 Dayana C.

Today I had the pleasure of spending some time with children making art, at the Calistoga Boys and Girls Club, after school.

I brought one of my paintings in to show them, and we talked about using color in ways we like, not necessarily the way we expect things to look. We looked at examples of paintings by the Fauves (who painted like wild beasts! Hence the name, which means "wild beasts" in French), and the German expressionists – portraits with green, yellow, and red faces – and landscapes with pink and blue hills and green skies....

Then the students set down to create something, using wild color inspired by the Fauves. Dayana, in the drawing above, decided to combine a landscape with a wild pink and red sky and a portrait – of me! Green skin, red neck, red hair, yellow bangs, and green ears – I love it! I am honored that she gave it to me.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Winter progress

Snow on Mt. St. Helena, February 2011 • photo © 2011 Karen Lynn Ingalls

Winter arrived (again), after a lovely but untimely interlude of early spring. Snow fell on Mt. St. Helena (above), the hills around Knights Valley (to its left), and up in Lake County, and decided to stay for awhile. I stopped to take this photo across from Graeser Winery. What you can't see is the tree, to the right, that was still partly full of all the blossoms the rain didn't knock down.

New shelves! • photo © 2011 Karen Lynn Ingalls

The studio is coming along well. I've finished this first stage of painting the walls, and two dear friends helped me set up shelves. Ah! The beginnings of a semblance of organization! It feels good.

Now I'm knuckling down to prepare for both a photographing trip to the desert and five (yup - count 'em - five!) shows in March. One will be a solo show – and that will be at the Westin Verasa, Napa, on the Napa River. Another will be with my Napa Valley Open Studios colleagues at A Taste of Yountville, a wonderful food–and–art event in the tiny town that has more top restaurants per square foot than any place in the world. It's going to be a busy week....

Monday, February 7, 2011

Napa Valley Art Workshops website

The first website (of the two I'm working on) is up! And you can find it at This one lists and describes the art workshops I'll be teaching this summer, and includes photographs from previous workshops.

While I'm still in the process of scheduling many of the workshops, dates are set for Create Your Own Wine Labels and Sketching Calistoga. And the Calistoga Visitors Center has made them official events of our town's 125th anniversary year! I need to go back and add the official logo to those pages....

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Building infrastructure

Inside the studio, newly painted walls • photo © 2011 Karen Lynn Ingalls

The turning of this year seems, for me, to be about building infrastructure of one kind or another.

The work I'm doing in my studio – painting walls, putting up shelves, reworking and organizing the space - the work I've been doing building websites (they're coming!) for my painting and my teaching, and the demonstration examples I'm making for this summer's workshops are kind of like roads, hospitals, and public works projects. You need them to get things done, to make things work. You depend on them.

Home page of one of the new websites • photo © 2011 Karen Lynn Ingalls

So, at some point the walls will all be painted, the shelves will all be up (it's a work in progress), and the paintings and canvases will be stacked on them neatly. The websites will be up and running, with all the information anyone needs or wants to know about my paintings and my classes and workshops. The sample work will all be done and photographed, and everything will run ever so efficiently....

Am I dreaming?

Okay, at least a bit more efficiently. I hope. I can hardly wait! Now, back to work....