pastel dust

I have been doing the “other stuff” related to painting for the past couple of weeks…getting pieces into frames, taking work to galleries, picking up other work, etc.  It’s all the busy work that takes big chunks of time.  I did go out and do some photography in a vineyard where I am going to be painting plein air during an evening dinner in this vineyard as part of an auction sale to benefit our local Hospice.  Three friends – M’Lisse and Lorie are cooking and presenting some wonderful fare to the high bidders of this auction lot; LeaAnn owns the vineyard and is providing al fresco dining in the shade of beautiful old trees at the edge of the vineyard and I am painting a 9×12″ piece while the party eats.  The painting is part of the package as well and will be given to the diners.  All in the spirit of giving back to a superb organization that provides so much for so many people.

So, I have included a couple of images of works that are part of my collection – not my work – but from family.  The watercolor is a field painting done by my great uncle who, along with my Mom was probably my most inspirational person to keep me painting.  This piece was probably painted in the 40’s – maybe late 30’s.  He lived in Chicago and was an artist working the the ad business.  He traveled a lot, painting and spent years roaming Europe before WWII painting.  Every Christmas, his signature was to paint Christmas cards for the family.  I have 7 of them that my mom saved and framed and gave me.  The cards are all of somewhere that was meaningful to his family – the front stoop of the house in Chicago, the home he lived in out in northern IL, the street he lived on in Paris, etc.
The other image is a wood carving done in a wooden bowl by a young man from Chicago who my Grandmother was a nurse for.  My grandmother was a nurse by training and a pioneer.   She journeyed to Montana in the teens of the century and homesteaded with her brother and his best friend.  She married the friend and after he died untimely, she returned to Chicago with my mom (age 13) in tow and re-upped her necessary continuing education and started nursing again.  Private duty nursing was a good paying line of work and she like that.  The boy that did the carving was recovering from some malaise and he and my grandmother became friends.  Once he recovered he finished the wood carving and gave it to her.
Just another couple of interesting art items with a bunch of sentimental value!

I did spend 5 days in the Puget Sound doing a variety of art things.  The state fair entries were due and this year their focus in the fine art department was Pastels, so I decided to take a piece there for that show.  Other duties were meeting with a gallery in Seattle to host our Northwest Pastel Society show in 2011.  Kirsten Gallery in the University district.  Lovely gallery and look forward to working with them. And then a day with the NPS for a board meeting and general membership meeting.  Finally a trip up to Bellingham to retrieve some pieces that had been shown and back to the east side of the state last night.  The Puget Sound is beautiful; but I certainly appreciate the less traffic and busy that I live in daily in Walla Walla!
So…for now…keep painting…I am going to do that this week!


About bonnie griffith

I am a landscape artist who works in pastels, oils and acrylics. My work focuses on representational studies of the western US. I am basically self taught with lots of workshops and studies with several landscape artists such as Bruce Haughey and Clark Elster. I live in southwestern Idaho, am a native Montanan with a strong connection to the land. I spend as much time as I can in MT painting as well other parts of the northwest. I appreciate getting out in the field and working plein air because there is nothing like completing a painting in the true light of day and visually not being compromised by the use of a photo. In my work, my goal is to produce a piece of work that draws the viewer into the painting and challenges them to explore the scene; get a sense of the time of day, the temperature, the light or lack of. If I have gotten that viewer to step out of their reality and into that painting and enjoy it, then my work was accomplished as I wished. View all posts by bonnie griffith

2 responses to “pastel dust

  • Ida M. Glazier

    Love the art your Uncle did, and the bit of family history. I have been painting, … the indside of the house!! Yes, sadly, thats tru…I will get out and plein-air tommarrow. But for now, painting the upsatirs bedroom of an old house built in 1896 onto the main house built in the 185o's!! Very old and beautiful. Jus wanted to say Hi! Love your posts.


  • Bonnie

    Ida, do you get my responses when I send them directly from my email? If not, here is basically what I said…Painting the house is a good thing. I like to paint rooms and change things up a bit…gives everything a fresh look. I am sure the house you live in is wonderful – being that old.Hope sometime to be able to meet and paint landscapes together!


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