Box Canyon

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Even though we have about 200 golf courses in our area there are still parts of the nearby desert that are dry and desolate. Box Canyon is one of these areas.

"Box Canyon" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Apple Tart for 4

Friday, February 27, 2009

I had lunch with friends today and we couldn't pass up the dessert menu. Wouldn't you agree?

"Apple Tart for 4" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Lantern in the Garden

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Tucked in a distant corner of Butchart Gardens is a delightful Japanese garden. Complete with a red bridge over running water and this weathered stone lantern. The purple hydrangea adds a spark of color to this otherwise drab scene.

"Lantern in the Garden" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Mary's Little Lamb

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Finding a flock of sheep busily munching on the local flora was a sight I wasn't expecting to find. I was headed for the California Poppy Preserve outside Lancaster last year when I happened upon these woolly creatures.

"Mary's Little Lamb" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Still Waters Run Deep

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

I spent the morning in Andreas Canyon painting with my fellow plein air (outdoor) painters. Located in the Indian Canyons at the south end of Palm Springs, hiking up this canyon is like being in a different world. Lush native palms and a babbling stream loaded with water from the snow melt off the San Jacinto Mountains makes it hard to believe you're in the desert.

"Still Waters Run Deep" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Jade Vine

Monday, February 23, 2009

The unusual color of the jade vine flowers is easily visible at dusk. The color attracts bats that drink its nectar and spread its pollen. A member of the pea family this plant is native to the Philippines.

"Jade Vine" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Dew Drops

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Water droplets are fascinating to paint and add a unique interest to piece of art. I think what intrigues viewers the most is how the artist actually accomplishes this feat. It's all in the physics of light.

"Dew Drops" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Is it Mardi Gras Yet?

Saturday, February 21, 2009

My dream is to one day celebrate Carnivale in Venice. But a home grown party with good friends and lots of fun will have to suffice for now.

"Is it Mardi Gras Yet?" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Coral Tree

This colorful, tropical tree puts on quite a show in the spring as the spike shaped petals burst from the tips of leafless branches.

"Coral Tree" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Daffodil Hill

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Just outside Redlands, CA, on the way up the mountains in a little berg called Running Springs, is a dedicated lady who has planted thousands of daffodil bulbs over the years. In addition to a wide variety of daffodils, there are also tubs of tulips and hyacinths, displays of cut flowers, meandering pathways and benches to sit on and reflect. What a way to welcome in Spring!

"Daffodil Hill" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Flying High at Sunrise

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

It's tourist season here in the desert and one activity the snowbirds enjoy is taking hot air balloon rides at sunrise. That's the best time out here as it's usually calm early in the morning. We can get some pretty heavy winds as the day warms up so they like to get an early start. I'm not an early riser but was fortunate to catch this shot one morning.

"Flying High at Sunrise" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Protect and Serve

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Many thanks to those who sacrifice and are dedicated to keep law and order in the realm.

"Protect and Serve" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Dining al Fresco

Monday, February 16, 2009

What's a little rain among friends? My friend Patty has strung lots of these seed balls in her Palo Verde tree and the birds were enjoying lunch today no matter what the weather.

"Dining al Fresco" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Bahama Wings

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Purple is my favorite color and when I saw this amphibian plane with purple engines I thought this was way to cool. But since I live in the desert an amphibian plane isn't very appropriate.

"Bahama Wings" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Happy Valentine's Day

Saturday, February 14, 2009

What more is there to say? Just remember to say it.

"Happy Valentine's Day" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Friday the 13th

Friday, February 13, 2009

If the black cat is walking away from you, is he crossing your path? I just want to make sure I don't have to worry about any bad luck.

"Friday the 13th" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Snow White

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Spring isn't here yet but it is the season for camellias. A favorite flower of Japan, these dramatic and almost always perfect flowers grow on bushes that can reach heights of 30 feet or more.

"Snow White" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Ketchikan Totem

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Art takes many forms and this beautiful carved totem in Ketchikan, Alaska, is a wonderful example of Native craftsmanship. Tales are told in these tall sculptures and their stylized shapes and forms are unique to this part of North America.

"Ketchikan Totem" © Kathy Dunham 2009

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Miss Angelina

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Palm Springs has a wonderful Air Museum. Lovingly restored and cared for, these WWII planes serve as a reminder of the price we've paid for our freedom. This B-17 was being moved today while I was at the museum painting with our local plein air group of artists.

"Miss Angelina" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Where's the Gold?

Monday, February 9, 2009

This was the closest I've been to a rainbow I still can't find the pot o' gold. Let me know if you've figured out where those sneaky little leprechauns hide it.

"Where's the Gold?" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Orange Delight

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Butchart Gardens in Victoria, BC is a gardener's dream come true. And for one who lives in the desert, the begonias, lilies and dahlias are a real treat to see.

"Orange Delight" © Kathy Dunham 2009

After the Storm

Saturday, February 7, 2009

On my agenda today was a "Plein air" class in watercolor for 7 students. Teaching outdoors is challenging at best but we'd had some rain Thursday night with sprinkles predicted through Saturday. Since Friday was pretty nice, sunny with clouds, and with stars showing when I went to bed, I had plenty of confidence for a decent day. Well, at 5 a.m. I was rudely awakened by pouring rain. Being the optimist that I am, I told myself, when life hands you lemons, make lemonade. By the time I left home it was barely misting. But I live 25 miles from our painting location. Everyone showed up, we found some cover, we had a little sun and some rain, a great lunch, more painting and a thoroughly great experience. By the time I returned home, I was rewarded with this beautiful scene of the clouds across the valley at sunset.

"After the Storm" © Kathy Dunham 2009


Friday, February 6, 2009

My photographer friend Randy Bernardi and his wife Pat invited me to attend an artist's reception for the work of photographer Robert Mapplethorpe. I've heard about his beautiful black and white images but have never seen them in person. Some of his pieces were so dramatic and overpowering. One in particular was a single, striped, parrot tulip. I remember I had a similar image so decided to see what I could do. What do you think?

"Tulip" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Rainy Day in Sarlat

Thursday, February 5, 2009

I made a run to Costco tonight to pick up a few things and get gas. When I left, the weather was dry and blustery, and when I came out 45 minutes later the ground was soaked. It felt good and we sure need the moisture. But I was reminded of a rainy day we spent in Sarlat, France last May. Wandering a Medieval town in the rain has a totally different feel than a sunny day. The colors are muted, the well worn streets take on a patina with the moisture and people scurrying under umbrellas gives it a whole different atmosphere.

"Rainy Day in Sarlat" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Mommy and Me

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Today I took my drawing class to the local park and it was so refreshing to see it being used by this mother and daughter. In this day and age of rush, rush, rush, families don't take the time to smell the roses and enjoy nature.

"Mommy and Me" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Cabot's Pueblo

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Today our plein air watercolor group painted at Cabot's Pueblo Museum in Desert Hot Springs. This unique, former residence, was built entirely by one man, of handmade adobe and other materials. The collection of "stuff" on the grounds makes it great fodder for painters.

"Cabot's Pueblo" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Bee at Work

Monday, February 2, 2009

While in France last year, I spotted this bee busy at work collecting pollen. The plant he was enjoying is a "Lamb's Ear" which is known for it's extremely soft leaves, very much like a lamb's ear.

"Bee at Work" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Me and My Shadow

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Light makes all the difference in the way I perceive a subject for a painting. Although I won't paint this bronze sculpture, the light and shadow patterns certainly intrigued me enough to capture the striking contrasts.

"Me and My Shadow" © Kathy Dunham 2009