Ondine - The Making of a Personal Project

I recently had the privilege of working with a couple of local models to shoot reference photography for some personal projects this year. This preliminary drawing titled “Ondine” came from these modeling sessions and will be painted much larger set in a natural environment. I find I can often acquaint myself with a model and her unique features in a sketch making me much more informed and comfortable when rendering the final painting. Here, I’ve experimented with a wet media background on board, pushing and blotting layers for an antiqued texture that will play on my “water” theme. I’ve rendered the figure and portrait in red/white pastel and colored pencil.

The name Undine or “Ondine” was given to a fictitious water spirit of human form in classical literature and was re-imagined in modern literature by Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Little Mermaid.” While I’m not envisioning a stereotypical mermaid with sparkling tail for my project, I am drawn towards the element of water and Ondine’s curse to exist between worlds. Water, as one of the five elements, is often associated with emotion, transformation, and metamorphosis from one shape to another…


I think in this drawing and season of my life, I am reflecting on the past and the comfort it brings me in solitude. Many of my figurative artworks are depicted alone and although this may seem inconsequential, I believe it a subconscious decision from my own life experience. Loneliness is often ridiculed as self-indulgent or disadvantaged, but as an introvert and artist, I have often found it to be an experience of great awareness. There are moments in the winding hours of my studio when I feel closer and more connected than if I were surrounded by thousands in a stadium full of people. I think much like the character of Ondine, the sacrifice of living between worlds makes you aware and appreciative of things in life that would otherwise go unnoticed. I often feel that my purpose as an artist is to remind others of the unnoticed and those singular reflections that help us to know ourselves and our trajectory better than anyone else. I will post a few progress pictures of this painting as it comes along. Stay tuned!

The Holidays Are Coming!

Now’s a great time to stock up on your Holiday Greeting Cards featuring my original artwork! All cards are printed on 100% Recycled Card Stock and start at $3.50 ea. or pick any 4 cards for $13.00. Browse new Illuminated Greeting Cards in our Shop today!

Lovely Illuminations Greeting Cards

Lovely Illuminations Greeting Cards

Candle On The Water


In my latest drawing Candle On The Water, I’ve revisited my favorite time period around the turn of the century, when visual design and fashion had a distinctly delicate and hand-fashioned aesthetic. Perhaps it’s that timeless and romantic quality of craftsmanship that I love in Victorian imagery. This drawing turns back a page from my early childhood memory of Helen Reddy singing Candle On The Water in the old Disney film Pete’s Dragon. It was a beautiful love sonnet sung by a timeless voice.

I'll be your candle on the water
My love for you will always burn
I know you're lost and drifting
But the clouds are lifting
Don't give up, you have somewhere to turn

I'll be your candle on the water
'Till every wave is warm and bright
My soul is there beside you
Let this candle guide you
Soon you'll see a golden stream of light

A cold and friendless tide has found you
Don't let the stormy darkness pull you down
I'll paint a ray of hope around you
Circling in the air, lighted by a prayer

I'll be your candle on the water
This flame inside of me will grow
Keep holding on, you'll make it
Here's my hand, so take it
Look for me reaching out to show
As sure as rivers flow
I'll never let you go
I'll never let you go
I'll never let you go