Archive for the ‘Original Oil Paintings’ Category

Spring Time

April 15, 2015

2015-4-4 Rose Tree

I just had to share a little of our garden with you today. Remember the Valentine Roses Jack got for me? Well, I think they’re happy. I know I am :) Please keep in mind as you read my blog, you can click on any of the images to see them larger.

2015-4-10 Irises, Rose Tree and Poppies 2

We have Irises, Roses, Bluebonnets and Red Corn Poppies. You can see more of our spring garden through the gate. Jack and I designed our gardens. My part time job over the past year has been doing the construction. I still have a little way to go but most of the heavy work is almost done. C’mon, follow me and we’ll check it out.

2015-4-9 Kitchen Garden 1

More Bluebonnets in the Kitchen Garden. If you’d like to see how this looked one year ago CLICK HERE.

2015-4-15 Kitchen Garden 2

The Jerusalem Sage is just starting to burst out in flower. I’ll keep you updated! The pink in the background is one of our Peggy Martin Roses on the arbor.

2015-4-9 Kitchen Garden from window

Here’s the Kitchen Garden from the window. I get to enjoy this view as I’m cooking.

2015-4-9 Swannee and Peggy

Doesn’t Swannee add a neat touch to this little vignette? It won’t be long before the Sweet Potato Vine and Marigolds grow up and fill out the Talavera planter. This “Peggy” is really beginning to fill out with blooms.

2015-4-9 Redbud garden

We’ll go ’round the back to the Redbud Garden. Rosie (Green Leaves on the left) and Ruby (Magenta Leaves on the right) are doing quite well. They are both Forest Pansy Redbud Trees, not sure why they look so different. Could be Ruby is more mature, the leaves are supposed to be this deep red-purple color. The red flowers on the left are Salvia Greggii.

2015-4-9 Redbud garden - Yellow Irises

Yellow Irises nestle near the base of Rosie.

2015-4-10 Fountain Courtyard steps and tomatoe bed

Looking from the Redbud garden back to the studio and the Fountain Courtyard. Tomatoes are planted in the bed that extends along the end of the deck to the right.

2015-4-10 Fountain Courtyard 2 under rose arbor

This arbor will also be covered with Peggy Martin Roses. Want to see how this looked when we moved here? Just CLICK HERE.

2015-4-9 Fountain courtyard 1

RadRazz Knock Out Roses and Arizona Sun Gaillardias. The unusual Sweet Potato Vine is called Chipolte! It’s a mix of Lime Green and deep Purple. You can click on the picture to see it larger. Confederate Jasmine will grow up on the trellis behind the fountain and cascade over the fence. It will be in full bloom in a couple of weeks, the fragrance will be wonderful. So that’s our garden! Hope you enjoyed a little of our spring finery. Hugs,

Mikki Senkarik signature JPEG

Tranquil Retreat

April 9, 2015

2015-4-9 Irises, Rose Tree and Poppies

Our Red Corn Poppies are in FULL BLOOM! Just in time to model for our painting today. The Irises, Valentine Roses and Bluebonnets are also looking wonderful. You can click on the picture to see it larger.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 46

Here are the colors I’ll use to paint the poppies. #1. Pthalo Blue + White. #2. Cadmium Red Deep #3. Cadmium Red Deep + Alizarin Crimson.#4. Cadmium Red Light. #5. Pthalo Blue + Liquin. #6. Three shades of green mixed with Pthalo Blue + Lemon Yellow.

The video above shows the initial block in, I’m working in reverse of my usual sequence: Flowers First, Leaves Last. Since the Poppies dance above the foliage I block in the leaves first. If the screen doesn’t show up just click on the link to view the video.

The thick paint of the Poppies is gently “Laid” on top of the underlying leaves. When my brush picks up any of the green paint I wipe if off with toilet tissue before continuing. This way the flower color stays bright and clean.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 47

PRESTO, Red Corn Poppies have popped up!

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 48

Let’s get those monogrammed rockers ready for the Rooster to perch on. I’ve added a little Cadmium Red Light into the mixtures left over from the satillo tile floor to paint the chairs.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 49

Now for our Rooster, we’ll have him ready to crow in no time!

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat 30x40Tranquil Retreat            30 inches by 40 inches       Original Oil Painting

AND…..Tranquil Retreat is ready for our collectors to sit in the shade of the Wisteria and enjoy the view. Although they may have to shoo the Rooster away to get a seat! Lots of Hugs,

Mikki Senkarik signature JPEG

California Poppies

April 8, 2015

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 41

The floor of the patio under the Wisteria covered pergola is satillo tile. The entire surface is painted first with mixes in various proportions of Cadmium Orange + MUD (Ultramarine Blue + Alizarin Crimson) + White.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 42

The perspective lines of the tiles are drawn freehand into the wet paint of the floor. I can’t use a mahl stick here, it would limit the movement of my hand and I couldn’t make the lines straight.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 43

A limestone base completes the patio. You can begin to see how the Warm/Cool rule works. The cool Bluebonnets fall back; the warm Sunflowers and tile floor jump to the foreground!

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 44

So let’s bring even more warmth to the foreground, California Poppies. The flowers are blocked in first with shades of Cadmium Orange, Cadmium Orange + Permanent Rose and Cadmium Red Light.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 45

The gray-green foliage is different mixes of Pthalo Blue + Cadmium Orange + a touch of Cadmium Yellow Medium + White. Next the deep centers are made with Alizarin Crimson thinned with a little Liquin. We should finish up in our next session, hope you’ll come watch. Hugs,

Mikki Senkarik signature JPEG

Sunflowers and Daisies

April 7, 2015

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 35

Sunflowers! One of my favorites. The color mixes for the leaves #1 are all various proportions of Pthalo Blue + Cadmium Yellow Medium. The lightest mix has a touch of White added. #2. Pthalo Blue + Liquin. #3. Cadmium Red Light + a little MUD + Cadmium Yellow Medium. #4. Cadmium Yellow Medium + MUD. #5. Pure Cadmium Yellow Medium. #6. Cadmium Yellow Medium + Lemon Yellow.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 36

Following my usual sequence of Flowers First, Leaves Last the blossoms are blocked in first, randomly smooshing the various yellows unto the canvas. Then I come back with the greens and work around the yellow, helping to shape the flowers.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 37

Isn’t it amazing when you put the dark centers in how the blobs of yellow immediate look like Sunflowers?

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 38

The White Daises are blocked in with the same order as the Sunflowers. Some of the darker cloud colors are used for the flowers in shadow.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 39

After the foliage is painted the individual petals touched by the light are applied in Pure White.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 40

The centers of the Daisies are added with some of the yellows leftover from the Sunflowers. The flowers in this corner are finished, giving Casper and Jazz a nice place to nestle. Thanks for following along. Oh, please remember, you can click on any of the pictures to see them larger. Hugs,

Mikki Senkarik signature JPEG

Four Legged Rescue Babies

April 6, 2015

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 29

Today we’re working on those cute rescue babies. Jack-Jack and Luna are knee deep in the Bluebonnet field. I brace against the mahl stick to paint the fine details.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 30

The whites on the miniature horses are muted and cool. A little blue has even been added to the highlights so they’ll stay in the background.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 31

Now for the donkeys. We’ll start with Casper, the white one. The colors I’ll be using are #1. MUD (Ultramarine Blue + Alizarin Crimson) + White. #2. MUD + Liquin. #3. The two mixes to the left of the number are different combinations of Pthalo Blue + a little Alizarin Crimson + White. Mixes #1, #2 and #3 will be used for the muzzle on both donkeys. #4. The three mixes to the right of the number are Cadmium Orange + MUD + A little Pthalo Blue + White. #5. MUD + Cadmium Orange + Ultramarine Blue + White. #6. Two shades of White + Cadmium Orange + Ultramarine Blue.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 32

The shadow areas are painted first.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 33

Next the white highlights are added. The Cadmium Orange mixed in the White makes it warmer, therefore it comes forward. This makes the horses in the background fall back even farther.

VIDEOS Today! You can follow along as I block in Jazz. If the screen doesn’t show just CLICK ON THE LINK to watch.

Here are the finishing touches on Jazz.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 34

Our loveable critters are complete. My last step today is to finish the Bluebonnets in front of Jazz. Thanks for following along. Hugs,

Mikki Senkarik signature JPEG

Easter Irises

April 5, 2015

2015-4-2 Iris- Dashing 2

Remember the Irises Jack gave me for Christmas to celebrate our Lord Jesus Christ’s birth? Well, we might not have Lilies but we have Irises blooming for Easter!

2015-4-3 Iris - Autumn Circus 2

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

John 3:16

We are so blessed to have every one of you in our lives. Your friendship, continued support, thoughts and prayers have been incredibly wonderful. The beauty God has created leaves us in total awe. We live in peace and tranquility knowing He gave his only son for us.


Jack and I thank you for being part of our life and wish everyone a Happy Easter.

Mikki and Jack signature JPEG

Little Details

April 3, 2015

NEWS FLASH! Jack’s newest article is posted on FineArtStudioOnline. To read Mistakes CLICK HERE.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 21

It’s all in the details. I find adding special little touches here and there makes a painting more interesting. And in the case of a commission it’s much more personal for the collector. Somehow it just didn’t seem right to have that open bird cage and no birds at all. So I’ve added Mr. and Mrs. Chippers, our resident Cardinals. She was in the cage, he’s encouraging her to come out and fly free! Can’t you hear his happy little chip, chip, chip calls?

 SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 22

Resting my left hand on the bare part of the canvas I use it to steady my right while delineating the details of the windmill blades.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 23

Blocking in the field of Bluebonnets begins in the distance with a muted mix of Ultramarine Blue + a tiny bit of MUD + White. Moving forward several mixes of Ultramarine Blue + White are used.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 24

A few different shades of Cobalt Blue + White are used for the Bluebonnets in the foreground. This is more intense than the mixes used farther back, therefore it comes forward. This is another simple rule that helps give the appearance of depth in a painting: Muted, Dull Colors Recede, Brighter Intense Ones Advance.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 25

Another detail that Susan requested was to include Jack-Jack and Luna, their miniature rescue horses, in the background. I block the basic shapes into the wet paint of the Bluebonnets. I’ll come back later and finish them out.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 26

Now it’s time to add the leaves of the Bluebonnets. The greens in the background are much bluer or cooler. Those toward the front are made warmer so they’ll jump forward.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 27

Now for the details that make Bluebonnets, well…….Bluebonnets. The little white caps! I use the corner of a small Bright (square) brush to dot them in. The ones closest to us are pure White, a touch of blue is added to the white as the caps recede.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 28

The Bluebonnets in front of the donkeys will be finished after I paint Casper and Jazz. As Kermit the frog would say,”We’re moving right along!” Hope to see you again soon. Hugs,

Mikki Senkarik signature JPEG

An Old Texas Barn

April 2, 2015

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 16

Before starting on the barn let’s paint the Heritage Live Oaks protecting it. In the spring when the Live Oaks here in Texas are covered with pollen they take on an almost fall look. My color mixes are shown above: #1. Two shades of Pthalo Blue + a tiny bit of Cadmium Orange + White. #2. A couple of mixes of Cadmium Orange + a bit of Thalo Blue + White. #3. Pure MUD (Ultramarine Blue + Alizarin Crimson) is on the left. The other two mixes are MUD + Cadmium Orange + White. #4. Four mixes in different proportions of Pthalo Blue + Cadmium Orange + White.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 17

The dark areas of the tree are blocked in first, then I come back and paint the lighter areas over them. If you’d like to see a video of a Live Oak in another piece being painted CLICK HERE.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 18

Sunlight slips in behind the barn and illuminates the massive trunk.

OK, let’s get to work on the barn. The walls are painted first. If the small screen doesn’t show up just CLICK ON THE LINK to view the video.

Now for the roof. Over time the sun has bleached out the colors just a bit but the Glory of our Texas State Flag NEVER FADES!

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 19

You probably noticed the mahl stick in the videos. This picture shows how the hook at the end is placed over the top of the easel. I brace my wrist against the stick to steady my hand in order to delineate the details of the barn. This particular hook is actually made for use in clothing stores to lift hanging clothes off of high rods.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 20

Trees and Barn… complete. I’ll be adding some fun details in the next session. Hugs,

Mikki Senkarik signature JPEG

A Wisteria Covered Pergola

April 1, 2015

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 10

“Painting Forward” from the sky the most distant hill is made with Ultramarine Blue + MUD + White. This makes a very muted blue that drops back. The next layer of hills is made warmer following a simple rule that helps to give the appearance of depth in a painting: Cool Colors go Back, Warm Colors come Forward.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 11

The Bluebonnets in the distance are also a dull blue so they’ll recede. Don’t worry, I’ll intensify the colors of the flowers as they come closer to the foreground. Usually I’d continue working on the landscape, painting the Live Oak Trees, barn and field of Bluebonnets. But I want to get the Wisteria blocked in while the sky paint is still wet. First we have to build the pergola so it will have a place to grow!

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 12

 I’ve started blocking in the Wisteria blossoms with Dioxazine Purple + White. Susan had a special request, a bird cage with the door open. I feel very honored, this is an important part of Jack’s and my story that she wanted to include in her painting. If you’re curious about the significance of the bird cage CLICK HERE to read our complete love story.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 13

The Wisteria is roughed in Flowers First (1) and Leaves Last (2).

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 14

It’s fun drawing the wispy, twisty tendrils into the wet paint of the sky. The final step on painting the Wisteria is to delineate the individual petals in the long dangling blooms.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 15

The Wisteria and bird cage are done. Hope you’ll come back soon and watch the progress. Hugs,

Mikki Senkarik signature JPEG

Shooting Stars!

March 31, 2015

2015-3-30 Texas Gold Columbine 7

Just have to share a little more from our spring garden. The Texas Gold Star Columbine in the pots on the right have provided nice lacy foliage in this shaded area all summer and winter. We’ve never planted them before, you can imagine our surprise when the blooms opened up a few days ago!

2015-3-30 Texas Gold Columbine 8

Don’t you think they look like Shooting Stars?

2015-3-30 Texas Gold Columbine 5

Here’s another look at one of the delicate blooms. WE LOVE ‘EM!

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 8

OK, OK, back to work. We’ll start our painting session today with the sky. My color mixes are: #1. MUD (Ultramarine Blue + Alizarin Crimson) + a little extra Alizarin Crimson + White. #2. MUD + White. #3. Mix #1 + Cadmium Orange + White. #4. Mixture #3 + more White. #5. Ultramarine Blue + White. #6. Pthalo Blue + a touch of Cadmium Orange + White. #7. Pthalo Blue + a tiny bit of Lemon Yellow + White.

This video shows blocking in the blue part of the sky. On a sunny day the upper portion of the sky is darker blue, near the horizon it becomes lighter and greener. Since it’s the source of light in the painting the sky is done first. If the screen doesn’t show just CLICK ON THE LINK to view the video.

Now we’ll add the clouds. They are painted wet-into-wet over the blue. This way I can easily soften the edges of the clouds, making them wispy and fluffy.

SD1315 Tranquil Retreat step 9

I let some of the darker, lower portion of the clouds go behind the windmill and top of the barn roof. This helps to give depth to the painting. You can click on the picture to see it larger. Thanks for following along today. Hope you’ll come back soon. Hugs,

Mikki Senkarik signature JPEG


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,266 other followers