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Source: Along For The Ride


I’ve often repeated this, but I love what I do.   I never tire of painting, and look forward to it everyday…miss it when I have to skip it for too long.   For me, it’s a tradeoff in that I get to be a fulltime painter if I adapt to irregular, and sometime infrequent, infusions of money.    I can support myself through my art if I’m willing to sometimes scale down my wants, and needs.   This is a good as it kind of enforces an honesty in my accumulation of things, and in my spending that I wouldn’t have the discipline for if I had a regular supply of money.   :}

The ‘feast and famine…famine and snack’ life gets nerve wracking, and demands creativity on occasion, to be sure, but there are so many aspects that make it well worth it to me.

There is also comfort in that being a well fed, but ‘starving’ artist, I am in good company !

Shown below is one of my Zen inspired watercolor on tissue paper paintings.    When this image began to emerge it was amazing and amusing to me.   I’m always surprised by the image the colors and tissue bring out, but this one really surprised me !   See more of my work for sale on Etsy at


I love going to Miami.   Last time we were there we saw the new Cirque du Soleil show Totem, visited Jungle Island, and went to the beautiful beach by my daughter’s condo.

It was already perfect warm, sunny Spring weather.    The beaches were still relatively empty, and Cirque was amazing.    I got to have a baby monkey sit on my head , and hold a parrot at Jungle Island….it was a great visit   :}

The Zen inspired watercolor on tissue painting shown below was done several years ago and I titled it ‘Miami’ then.    I always smile when I see it.     See more of my work for sale on Etsy at www.lynnefrenchdesigns.com0044w

Yesterday began kind of blustery, with a prediction of rain, so we skipped going to the Farmer’s Market.   By the afternoon, though the temperatures were in the low 80’s, the winds were up to 85 mph, and we were getting 2 to 3 inches of rain an hour !  The skies were black as pitch and I felt we could take off for Oz at any moment.   Dangerous, rain wrapped tornadoes were spotted by the Dopplar radar heading toward the Orlando area.

We nested down inside and kept an eye on the weather channel while it poured rain and the winds blew.   We prepared to protect ourselves in the cement block interior closet if the storms got worse.

Within two hours, the storms had passed over us and the skies were blue with only a few puffy white clouds.  Across the street in the park, squirrels romped in the bright green grass.   In the Oak tree outside my studio window, two vibrant, ruby red Cardinals bickered and chirped as a light, warm breeze blew in the open windows.   The streets were dry, the sun was out, and there was no sign of the previous turbulent morning and afternoon.

Florida weather can be hectic and unpredictable.  Thankfully, this storm resolved quickly with no injury or damages, leaving only a memory of a rainy, windy day.   So, as a man I met who’s visiting from frosty Vermont said of Florida weather, when I asked if he liked it here….’What’s not to like ?!’   :}

Here’s one of my newer impressionist oil landscape paintings done with a palette knife….I’ll post some of my Zen inspired watercolor on tissue soon.  See more of my work for sale on Etsy at



It’s a verrrrry dark, rainy, and thundery ( but nice and warm ) morning in Florida.   So, if the natural light cooperates, I will be starting a new group of impressionist oil paintings today.   My tentative mental image beginnings are for a beach dune/cove along the Monterey Bay in California, a garden wall/gate/path, the Sunflowers in the blue and white vase I have in my studio, and maybe a koi pond.   It seems it’s easier for me to make progress if I keep several paintings going, with one being completed regularly.

I’ve painted these scenes before, and will again after this I hope…. I enjoy it each time almost like it was a brand new experience.   I am easily amused with the memory span of a goldfish, and I like it that way   :}

Painting the same, or very similar, images is not possible with the Zen inspired watercolor on tissue paper paintings I do.   Those images are determined by the random folds and swirls of the tissue paper.    The image is not chosen or decided upon, and then applied to the tissue.   The image waits in the dimensional configurations of the tissue to be discovered through application of color.

Yesterday I finished Provence Courtyard Wisteria, 16 x 20, impressionist oil done with a palette knife,  shown below.     See more of my work for sale on Etsy at  where for a limited time~ENDS MARCH 22nd~I’m offering free shipping on all purchases, just enter the coupon code FREESHIP4YOU at checkout.   ENDS MARCH 22nd~use coupon code FREESHIP4YOU


My two cats Silky and Salvatore, conscientiously woke me at 6:30 this morning to save them from certain starvation.   Last week, before we moved the clocks ahead for Daylight Savings Time, it was light at 6:30 a.m., this week it’s dark as pitch.  After feeding and petting the cats, I ensconced myself at my computer by a big window to begin my a.m. routine as the daylight worked it’s way to Florida.   Even though it was still pretty dark, I could see the squirrels were up and running, the school busses were on their way to gather students, people were on their morning run or walk, and birds were chirping.   Squirrels, cats, and birds, aren’t beholden to clocks, appointments, and time, of course, but most of the rest of us are.    The ‘time’ changes…the schedule does not.

Here is one of my watercolor on tissue paper paintings titled ‘Tranquil Angel’ where the technique was inspired by the ancient Zen meditation ritual where monks gazed at crumpled, white rice paper until a vision appeared.  See more of my work for sale on Etsy at  where for a limited time I’m offering free shipping on all purchases, just enter the coupon code FREESHIP4YOU at checkout.


It’s a very unusual Seattle-esque morning for Celebration….dark, gray, drippy rain, people with umbrellas hurrying by.  I can almost pretend I’m back on Queen Anne Hill looking out my window over the canal at Fremont, watching the university rowing team go gliding by.  One of the many differences here in Florida is that by tomorrow it will be sunny and in the high 70’s….maybe even by this afternoon !

Did alot of painting yesterday, and have more to do today.   Happily, I always have more painting to do.   I have taken breaks from painting in the past, but have always known I would return, and don’t know what I would do if I didn’t paint.  Sometimes I fret about what might happen if I couldn’t paint.  I pull myself out of those projected thoughts as quickly as possible, and replant myself in the happier here and now where I can paint   :}

One of my favorite watercolor on tissue paintings titled wild Iris is shown below.  The process I use for all the watercolor on tissue paper paintings is inspired by the ancient Zen meditation ritual in which monks would crumple, then smooth, a piece of white rice paper, and gaze at it until a vision appeared.  In this process, the image is given to me, rather than me deciding on what to paint.   See more of my work for sale on Etsy at  where for a limited time I’m offering free shipping on all purchases, just enter the coupon code FREESHIP4YOU at checkout.


Yesterday was the Farmer’s Market, and it was a beautiful warm, sunny, blue sky day in Celebration, Florida.   There were lots of people walking and on bikes, and alot of them with their dogs….lots of people looked at my paintings, and through my prints and cards.  I watched Egrets and Blue Herons…saw a Gator glide down the canal, and saw gorgeous hot air balloons rising in the early morning sky.

Happily, a fair amount of items sold, which, aside from the visiting, food, and fun, is why I go   :}

Today after getting some paintings ready to ship, updating my Etsy listings, and stuff like that, I have lots and lots more work waiting for me…new impressionist, oil landscape paintings that need to be begun and done…yippee…lots of work of the best kind, and big fun for me !   I have some ideas in my mind, ready to go, and I might also look through some photos and files for re-inspiraton.  I’m also working on finishing a couple of my watercolor on tissue paintings that are inspired by an ancient Zen meditation ritual.

Here are a couple of the paintings that sold yesterday.  See more of my work for sale on Etsy at  where for a limited time I’m offering free shipping on all purchases, just enter the coupon code FREESHIP4YOU at checkout.


In 1993 the People’s Republic of China opened a theme park named Splendid China, near Orlando, FL featuring over 60 handcrafted replicas of China’s landmarks.   Splendid China closed, and was abandoned, in 2003 after just 10 years of business, due to protests, and money problems.

Recently, a friend and I went to look around a bit…from the outside of the fence, of course !   There is a $500.00 trespassing fine, and wild, overgrown, abandoned buildings are a haven for snakes, spiders, etc.

The remnants of some of the scaled down exhibits can be seen from the street and sidewalk.  There are spacers in the design of the wall so you can glimpse details of others behind it.   Some landmark replicas are built on bermed hills, so they are also visible.   It’s obvious, even from these distant glimpses, that the park has been heavily vandalized, but even a few contemporary ruins through the tall grasses were worth seeing….

Then back home to work….finishing an impressionist Provence landscape, and then set about getting prepared for the Farmer’s Market tomorrow in Celebration.

Here is a new  impressionist lanscape oil painting done with a palette knife.   See more of my work on Etsy at www.lynnefrenchdesigns.com053  where for a limited time I’m offering free shipping on all purchases, just enter the coupon code FREESHIP4YOU at checkout.

Almost daily I play with, and exercise, my two cats Silky Montecore, and Salvatore Joy.  I do this because they seem to enjoy it, and because I hope it helps them to stay active and to not be bored.   I have a fairly large condo, with a long ceramic tile entryway, a long tiled hallway, and fair size tile floor living room & kitchen for them to run, skid, and slide through.   Every morning Silky, & Salvatore stage their own version of the ‘Running of the Cats’ while I toss (low calorie) treats, one at a time, down the halls, and across the rooms, for them to retrieve and nibble.

No matter how many times he chases after a tiny treat…no matter if the treat bounces or slides…no matter where it comes to rest, Salvatore is wide-eyed, leaping, twirling, and pouncing after each treat like it was the first he had ever seen !   With Silky, I could be lobbing Beluga caviar down the hall, and he would lazily saunter like he was half irritated by having to move at all to go after it.   Silky plods with his head down…Salvatore is always looking for things that will fascinate him, and if nothing appears he fascinates himself by creating his own games, etc.

It is a discipline well worth working at for me to stay wide-eyed, leaping through, and pouncing on, what life has to offer…like Salvatore careening down the hall, making it the most fun he possibly can!

Painting helps me do this…enjoying painting helps me do this.  Today I’ll be working on an impressionist landscape oil painting of an old barn, done with my trusty palette knife…tomorrow I’ll be working on some new Zen inspired watercolor in tissue paper paintings.

Below is an example of an impressionist oil landscape done with a palette knife.   See more of my work on Etsy at  where for a limited time I’m offering free shipping on all purchases, just enter the coupon code FREESHIP4YOU at checkout.


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