I just finished two small paintings today that I began some time ago. Sunset on the Ridge, above, began as an in-class demonstration – the one attended by the couple that gave the Napa River Inn and me five stars! I had set it aside, and then moving, the death of my father, and preparations for Open Studios intervened. Today I gave it the last few brushstrokes it needed to be ready for unveiling.
Trees by the Lake is another painting begun some months ago. I worked on it last week, and today it came to completion. I work from photographs; this photograph is taken of a lovely spot on a small ranch where I used to live, not far from Calistoga.
I took the photos of these paintings quickly in late afternoon light today, so it doesn't quite do them justice, but at least you get an idea of something of what they look like. I'm hoping to get them framed this morning before I pack up for the first Calistoga Art Market.
The Art Market is presented by the Calistoga Art Center, today from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Eighteen artists working in various media will be there. I'm looking forward to seeing everyone's work. The Art Center is located at the Napa County Fairgrounds in Calistoga, California, at 1435 North Oak Street.
The weather was beautiful for us on Saturday! With enough time to prepare ahead of time (no rain to compete with), I was able to put up more artwork.
It was really lovely to get a chance to talk with people who had driven all the way upvalley to see me! This spot is a bit out-of-the-way, compared to other parts of the valley, but the cottage on the property actually is where I used to live, and whenever it was too hot or cold to work in my barn studio in Franz Valley, my kitchen served as my small works studio.
One of the other benefits of showing my work here is that I was able to explain (and point to) just where in the neighborhood quite a few of my landscape subjects are located.
Last year, someone I know, who handles the business end of things for her painter husband, thought I might like making some of my paintings into tiles, and recommended to me a place that did them. The tiles looked beautiful, and people liked them, so this year I had more made, and had little 2" square tiles made, too, for magnets. I like having the magnets on my refrigerator (well, I do enjoy being able to look at my paintings!), and now have more to choose from!
Given the cloudy skies we had both weekends, it was appropriate that I had paintings from my Skies series here, too. They're a little different from the landscapes, but all I had to do to find them was look up.
Some people may remember coming to my Open Studios just across Petrified Forest Road, at the Right Ranch. I lived up on the hill, at the top of the ridge, with beautiful, unobstructed views of the sky. One year we had marvelous skies, day after day, and I would perch at the top of the hill and point my camera skyward. This series was the result (and, yes, the clouds really were in those shapes).
As the rain threatened to return on Sunday, I consolidated my paintings undercover as much as possible. I rather like seeing them all together like this, though it's not a combination I would ordinarily assemble together. By the way, the top left painting is of Davenport Landing, just north of Santa Cruz – only the second seascape I've painted. One of these days I may work on more seascapes... I like challenging myself to try new things. It's one of the things that keeps me engaged creatively, and constantly learning.
My studio mate, Sequoia Buck, likes to create scarecrows – and this is one of them. She greeted people as they came to my little alleyway gallery.
On Sunday, finally, the rains came, just as it was nearly time for our Open Studio to close. I had moved many of my things inside and undercover already, and packed up everything else under the cover of my canopies and umbrellas.
My thanks to all who visited this year! I appreciate it, and very much enjoyed getting to chat, and share my work, with everyone.
Karen Lynn Ingalls
I am an artist in Napa and Sonoma Counties, in California. I paint colorist landscapes of rural California, teach art classes and lessons, and live in Calistoga, California. I also teach private, group, and corporate art workshops in Napa Valley, Sonoma County, and other parts of Northern California.