Call Me Crazy

…but I decide to attempt the 30 Paintings in 30 Days Challenge again! We will see how far I get before life gets in the way. Considering that the goal of the challenge is to paint more frequently, it can’t hurt to try. This time around I have decided to paint small. Let’s see if that helps.

The Mod Squad ©Loralee Chapleau 6x6

The Mod Squad
©Loralee Chapleau

So far painting smaller didn’t help! For my first painting I decided to try my hand at the Daily Paintworks Crowd of People Challenge.  This was fun, but the complicated subject matter was difficult to execute on a small scale. I decided the best thing to do was to simplify. I like the way simplified figures lean toward abstraction.

The way the central figure came out reminds me of vintage mod fashion art. That is why I decided to call it The Mod Squad.

Purchase this painting here.



Reflective ©Loralee Chapleau 40x30 oil on canvas

©Loralee Chapleau

Hello again! I know it has been awhile since my last post. I was busy painting larger canvases for an exhibit that opened last week at the Harrington Gallery at the Firehouse Arts Center. The exhibit is called Inside & Out: Plein Air and Studio Works. The exhibit contains plein air and studio paintings by me and six other painters, collectively know as the Joules. This painting is one of my larger pieces in the exhibit.

Sunlight reflects off of the foliage. An iridescence reflects on the girl. I wonder what she is reflecting on?

Spring Vineyard

Spring Vinerard ©Loralee Chapleau 18x36

Spring Vinerard
©Loralee Chapleau

I painted in the vineyards this week. I am going to take a cue from Monet and paint the same spot again and again.  I plan to go back there once a month to see how the foliage, color, and light changes over time. This should be an interesting experiment because I will also get to see if my painting approach changes and progresses.  We will see how this turns out.

My Green Sea

Cliffs Hwy 1 ©Loralee Chapleau 24x36

Cliffs Hwy 1
©Loralee Chapleau

I am primarily a plein air painter. I love being outside, painting on location. It allows me to be immersed in the moment, and to really get the feel of a place. Due to the nature of plein air, I often have to paint on smaller canvases. I like the impact that a larger painting can have, so I have been using my smaller plein air pieces as inspiration for larger paintings.

When I painted this from a smaller plein air piece, I could easily recall the rhythmic sound of the waves, the cool ocean breeze cutting across my face, and the smell of salt in the air. All of that memory and feeling went into the creation of this painting. I hope that some of those sensations come through to the viewer.

Sherbert Delight!

Sherbert Delight ©Loralee Chapleau 20x20 oil on canvas

Sherbert Delight
©Loralee Chapleau
20×20 oil on canvas

It is that time of year again! Summer is nearly here. It is time to open up the swimming pools and let the summer festivities begin. When I was a child in Vermont, getting to go to a pool was a special treat. Backyard pools were not nearly as common as they are here in sunny California. Being poolside still gives me that exhilarating feeling that I had as a child. That is why this was such a fun subject to paint.

Other special summertime treats were of the frozen variety. We enjoyed ice-cream, Popsicles, and  fruity sherbet, which we called “sherbert.” As soon as I painted this, I stepped back from my easel and exclaimed, “it looks like sherbert!” It’s funny how memories can come sneaking through a painting.

Here is to summertime memories, the ones from long ago and the new ones that we will make. I hope your summer is a delight!

Scene on the Strait

Bel Air Beauty ©Loralee Chapleau 20x20

Bel Air Beauty
©Loralee Chapleau

I am very happy to be participating once again in this years Scene on the Strait. Scene on the Strait is an art festival that raises funds for the nonprofit Carquinez Regional Environmental Education Center (CREEC), whose mission is to restore butterfly habitat along the Carquinez Strait. August 8th, 2015 will be a fun filled day of music, food, art, and art lovers.

So, to celebrate being part of this fun festival, I thought I would share this painting of a “scene on the strait” that I recently painted. I saw this beautiful Bel Air Beauty at the Benicia Classic Car show that took place a couple of weeks ago. As soon as I saw it, I knew what I wanted to paint!

Spring Shows

Spring Mustard ©Loralee Chapleau 20x20

Spring Mustard
©Loralee Chapleau

In the eastern counties of the San Francisco Bay Area, nothing announces springtime like the blooming fields of mustard. These cheerful blossoms are a welcome sight after the cold and dark days of winter. That is why I chose this as one of three paintings that I have entered into the ADAS Spring Show, Primavera. Here is a link for more details.

I am also happy that one of my paintings will be in this year’s Fresh Works Exhibit at the Harrington Gallery. I am looking forward to both receptions, and they occur on the same day. It will be an artful day, which is just the way that I like it.

Irises in Bloom

Midnight Taccata ©Loralee Chapleau 18x14

Midnight Taccata
©Loralee Chapleau

The irises are starting to bloom in Napa County. I painted this yesterday at the Napa Country Iris Garden. It is just beautiful there. Nothing compares to painting out on a sunny day, with a cool breeze, surrounded by these colorful blooms. Monet knew how to live!

Funky Street

Funky Crockett Road ©Loralee Chapleau 12 x 9

Funky Crockett Road
©Loralee Chapleau
12 x 9

It has been a very busy year for me. I have been in the studio working on some very large pieces for a commission. I am really looking forward to getting back outside to do some more plein air work. I have missed being able to work from direct observation, and from the dynamic of painting in the elements. I hope to get outside this weekend, but in the mean time I am going to dive into another large studio piece.

This is a funky little road scene that I painted last summer. I thought it would be fun to do a lager version. I am going to attempt a 40 x 30 of this one. I will post the results later. Wish me luck!

Mountains of the Moon

Abstract 4 ©Loralee Chapleau 8x8

Abstract 4
©Loralee Chapleau


It is day eight of the 30 paintings in 30 days challenge. I must admit that I have thought about letting a day go by with out posting, but here it is. I am continuing to have fun exploring abstract landscapes. This one reminds me of a song called Mountains of the Moon.