Category Archives: painting

pen and ink portrait

pen and ink portrait

20160111_170900bMy friend C protests she is not an artist but every year she takes a road trip on which she makes pen and ink landscapes.  I am impressed.  It takes me years before I am brave enough to abandon my pencil and eraser.  Favorite pen #2, Platinum Fountain Pen, Preppy, Fine Nib, Black (PPQ-200-#1)


Unforgettable, that’s what you are Natalie Cole.  Pen and ink portrait.  Working with my new favorite pen, Platinum Carbon Desk Fountain Pen, Super Fine (DP-800S#1).  Working in pen and ink is good for me, a bit thrilling as there is no erasing and it keeps me from being too detailed.  It is loose and fresh.


Quick Studies in Oil

Quick Studies – Oil & Acrylic – Friday

oil painting 2 pearsWe are blessed here in Santa Cruz, CA to have so many great art instructors.  For the next 4 Fridays I will be taking an oil, quick studies painting class with Barbara Bailey Porter at the Santa Cruz Art League.  Is there an emoticon for a person jumping for joy?

Using small canvases, big brushes, and a short painting period, the intention is to paint the impression and not overwork or over analyze.  This is a 30 minute painting on an 8×10″ canvas panel, two pears.  I love painting pears, the irregular shapes, the variation in colors, and afterwards the lovely delicious treat of eating the pears!

Summer Arts 2015

Cabrillo College Summer Arts 2015 Workshop


Sanzu no Kawa

Our local junior college, Cabrillo College, in Aptos CA, has a fabulous Summer Arts program every year.  For me it is a wonderful “Stay-cation”.  This year Tim Craighead is teaching a week long abstract painting workshop.  It is just what I needed for my River series.  I needed to break away from my source material and take my paintings to another level.

Quick Sketch

Quick Sketch

scan0010TV sketch plus, Scottie.  Added a splash of watercolor.  I am aiming for an Egon Scheile style of drawing.  Pen, ink, and watercolor.


TBT: Flowers 2

TBT Flowers 2

Amaryllis and NudeAs my friend Bonnie would say, “Flowers for your bouquet”.  An acrylic painting on canvas, “After the bath”.

Happy Thursday!

TBT: Fish

TBT: Fish


Fish are the birds of the undersea realm.  Their behavior in schooling is similar to birds flocking.  The way they move in groups is also similar to birds.  To have a large school of fish swirling around you is an incredible sight.


Art Stories: Marine indicator species

Art & Science

I lead a dual life.  By day I am a science researcher.  But I am also an artist.  My art friends want to know, when do I have the time to work?  During lunch, after work, on the weekends, and when I have insomnia, I think about art, I dream about art.

Sometimes I am able to combine my research work and my art.

Marine Biodiversity

Currently I’m involved in a collaborative project to study  marine biodiversity in Monterey Bay, California.  Marine biodiversity is a key indicator of ocean health and can give us an integrated picture of what is happening in the ocean.  These studies will provide marine resource managers and policymakers with tools to address threats ranging from invasive species to climate change.

Marine Indicator Species

One of the marine indicator species proposed is krill.  Krill are near the bottom of the oceanic food chain and are therefore very important to marine life.  Krill are very small crustaceans.  They are the main food source for some species of whales, and also for fish, penguins, seals, and squid, among many other ocean wild life.

The krill population in the world’s ocean becomes critical not only for marine wild life but also for people, more than 3.5 billion people depend on the ocean for food.

The ocean is life.

ReikoArt Shop

The Marine Series will soon be available for sale.  Art prints with mats will be available from my web store.  Also I’ll be working with a third party vendor to provide Fine Art Giclees.  If you are interested please sign up for my newsletters or drop me an email.

Everybody’s Ocean Art Exhibit at MAH

Jellies: Mixed media 2014

Jellies: Mixed media 2014

Everybody’s Ocean, an art exhibit at the Santa Cruz Museum of Art and History.  Wave II runs Feb 27 through Apr 19.

My submission, “Jellies”, an abstract mixed media art piece of the surreal and ghostly jellies as they drift through the upper ocean realm.

Scuba diving in Monterey Bay, we saw many jellies as they were a frequent visitor.  As jellies float slowly through the water, it was easy to get close to examine them.  Sometimes one could spot small crabs on the bell, or an unfortunate fish tangled in the tentacles.  And sometimes swarms of jellies surrounded and flowed passed us.

For me, having lived along the coast all my life, the ocean is a circadian rhythm.

To be full immersed in the ocean, to give in to the power of the ocean, and to let oneself be gently rocked in the ocean’s embrace is an incredible feeling.

The ocean is life.  The ocean provides food, water, and air.  Without the ocean we cannot exist.

New Paint Brushes

Silver script paint brushes

Silver script brushes

As I mentioned in a previous post I have a weakness for paints and paint brushes. These script brushes were recommended by the watercolor artist and teacher Steve Fleming. A script brush is narrow and has a long hair. Typically used for lettering, outlining, and it has a fantastic capacity to hold lots of paint and so makes a wonderful continuous line.

watercolor painting, art

watercolor study , river series

In art, making marks is an important part of any piece. The sepia marker I was using in my river series just didn’t seem strong enough, see figure on right. And so I’m experimenting with my new script brushes for improved marks. Stay tuned and let me know what you think of the results.