Although I developed an interest for art at a young age, it lay dormant for way too many years. About twelve years ago I decided there was no time like the present to nuture a latent interest. Mainly self taught, I plunged into classes, workshops, books and anything I could get my hands on to learn as much as I could about my favorite medium, watercolor.
It's been work but the rewards and pleasure of creation have been worth it. Those first few paintings do not even come close to what I am proud of today. My genre style developed into close up, sometimes semi-abstractions of flowers. Through my Mother's love of flowers, I've found these wonderous beauties of nature calling me. But it's the drama created when the sun kisses their petals that I become entranced and feel the urge to create.
I've written a book, "Artist's Projects You Can Paint - 10 Floral Watercolors", been published in several art books and now have the privilege of teaching workshops in such wonderful places as Palm Springs, CA; The Dordogne Region in Southwest France and in Canyon de Chelly, AZ.
Visit my web at www.kathydunham.com
Not too far from my place is a western set created by Roy Rogers for filming his TV shows and movies. It's open to the public; they have shoot-outs on the weekends (when the season is cooler) and have a "Saloon" called Pappy and Harriet's that serves good grub and music. Plan on visiting the next time you're in the Coachella Valley area.
It's a flower most of us see daily. Many times it's spotted on freeways, or in landscapes as a background plant or filler plant. We know not to eat it as it's poisonous. What is it? The common oleander. We rarely observe the flowers up close yet they are interesting and come in a wide variety of colors and petal configurations.
This sentry tower at the fort called "El Morro" in San Juan Puerto Rico, has been standing since the fort was built in 1493. That's right. They started building it the year after Columbus made his big discovery.
It's starting to warm up here in the desert and this Mexican Bird of Paradise is showing off in all it's glory. A hardy, heat loving plant, it blooms prolifically in the summer adding vibrant color to the landscape.
I was remiss in posting something in honor of Flag Day. Most people today don't even know when it is. Do you? I took this shot at the Palm Springs Air Museum. It's a wonderful display of planes from WWII. Visit it next time you come to our beautiful valley. btw... Flag Day is June 14th.
My niece visited me this weekend and we spent the early afternoon yesterday at The Living Desert, our local zoo which focuses on plants and animals in desert environments. It was a beautiful day and this adult bobcat was very accommodating and posed for me.
I've heard that Elvis was still alive but didn't believe it until I saw it with my own eyes. And here he is! Notice the guitar shaped sun visors. And the embroidered names on them. No, this is not Las Vegas, but downtown Palm Springs on a June afternoon.
Commissioned by Pope Innocent X and completed in 1651, this spectacular travertine and marble fountain that graces the Piazza Navona in Rome is a symbol of the four major rivers of the continents as was known at that time. The Danube, representing Europe; The Ganges, for Asia; The Nile for Africa; and The Rio della Plata for the Americas. The head on the figure of the Nile is shrouded as the source of the river wasn't known to Europe at that time.
Known by many names, all parts of this beautiful plant are poisonous and narcotic. One of artist Georgia O'Keefe's favorite subjects, the Datura stramonium blooms in the morning and on hot days starts to wilt by noon. Also called Jimson Weed, Jamestown Weed and Common Thorn Apple this American annual is a common weed in many countries.
Early morning light as it passes through newly developed grape leaves presents a dramatic image. As the leaves mature they get thicker and aren't as translucent so the delicate glow of the sun shining through these young leaves makes it a special sight first thing in the day.
I was trying to decide what to use for a class exercise one morning when I spotted these sprouting onions on the counter. Turned out the students loved it. The green tops added to the composition and was the spark of color needed to round out the design.
I took a walk along the back streets and alleys of Eymet when I was in France and came upon this lone rose, doing it's best to put on a good show. Someone has lovingly tied it up, hoping to make it a climber.
I was just getting ready to post my blog tonight when I heard a popping noise that I have learned to recognize as fireworks. It's a frequent happening here in the desert at various country clubs so I grabbed my camera and hoped for the best. I have a new setting for fireworks and I was surprised at the results. Can't wait for the 4th of July!
It's June and the smoke trees are in full bloom. And this honey bee was really busy collecting pollen. Smoke trees are indigenous to the Colorado Desert and you'll find this member of the pea family in washes where it soaks up moisture.
Monet's Garden was awash with blooms, irises, tulips, wisteria, azaleas and rhododendrons. But when I spotted these orange ones I was taken aback. I'm used to seeing them in whites and shades of reds and pinks. They were so vibrant they almost looked phony.
Rural French street markets are fascinating. Similar to ours, they offer all types of merchandise including the sausage man, the vanilla man and for the ladies - jewelry. Who wouldn't enjoy these bright, colorful beads?
Taking a simple approach to the morning meal the French titillate the senses with a combination of sweet and savory. Cheese, ham, fresh fruit, croissants and jams with your morning coffee or tea is a great way to start the day.