Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Grand Teton National Park

Next stop on the National Park tour is
Grand Teton National Park

Founded in 1929, it may not have been the first, like Yellowstone, it's neighbor to the north, but it is my personal favorite.   My mom and dad started with a 3 week timeshare back in 1980, which ultimately developed into a full time residence, mostly enjoyed in the summertime.  My brother and his wife live there year round now and I visit as often as possible.  When this e-mail hits your in-box, my husband and I will have just arrived!!  

For me, the real beauty of this park is found on hikes up into the canyons and around the many lakes that lie in front of the range.  Most folks see the Tetons from the Rockefeller Highway that runs north / south on the way to Yellowstone.  This view is from a turnout on that road where Ansel Adams took the famous photo shown below.   When my daughter and I were there a few weeks ago, we got up at 5:30 am to catch the sunrise on the tip of "The Grand."  It took my breath away.  This painting doesn't come close to doing it justice... you really need to make the trip and see it for yourself!!

The Tetons and The Snake River by Ansel Adams 1942

See more of the Tetons by following me on Instagram
and learn more about GTNP by visiting:

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Yellowstone National Park

Happy 100th Birthday to the National Park Service!!

It seemed fitting that my first watercolor for the National Park series would be of our first National Park!!

Yellowstone National Park was established in1872, before the states that now surround it became part of the Union.  Covering just under 3500 square miles, it's one of the biggest parks in the USA.  I read that if you drive on every road in the park, you'll only cover 1%!  My daughter Katie and I visited there just a few weeks ago and as always I am just blown away by the sheer beauty of this park, each quadrant different from the next.  Forests, plains and canyons and then theres the awe and wonder of the thermal activity: geysers, mud pots and hot springs that pop up in the most unusual places. Not to mention the waterfalls!!   It is all so varied and magnificent.  God's handiwork is everywhere!

This sketch is one of the iconic views of the Lower Falls in the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone.  It was considered THE Grand Canyon, until another one in Arizona became a park in 1919!  It is actually an ancient geyser basin, and over millennia the hot water and chemical weakened the bedrock changing the shape and colors to what you see today.

To learn more about Yellowstone National Park visit:

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Austin Family Home

One of the things I love most about home sketching, is learning the stories that go with them... what makes this house, a's history and the memories.   This story in particular really touched my heart.

My client, an Austin Realtor wanted a very special closing gift for her very special client who was now selling this home for her parents who had recently passed away.  Their home was built in 1959 and her parents had lived there for a half century, something unheard of these days... and it was where she and her brother had both grown up.  My heart just melts when I imagine all the memories she had there and the emotions she must have felt.  

I'm so grateful for the opportunity to be able to be a part of giving them this keepsake to help them remember and treasure their past. 

Thank you Liz Zepeda of North Pier Realty in Austin for reaching out to me.  It truly was my pleasure!

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Family Tree

I was thrilled to do this new project for my client 
as a gift for her parents 60th Anniversary!

I am all about families and love that each one is unique... always growing and changing with the "seasons of life!"   This one even leaves room for some grand-kids to add a spouse and lots and lots of great-grand babies!!  What could be better than that?

Consider one for your family or for an upcoming special occasion.  Each one can be customized to fit your families distinctive needs  with it's one-of-a-kind design drawn specifically to illustrate your unique family tree! 

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Our National Parks

Each year, I take a mother - daughter trip with one of my girls.  More often than not we tend to end up in a National Park!  

Last year, Sarah and I took a three day rafting trip down the Colorado River in The Grand Canyon.  You can see more about that trip on my blog: www.mythird.act - July 2015. 

Tomorrow, my daughter Katie and I will be traveling to The Grand Tetons and Yellowstone National Park.  If you follow accentsinart on Instagram, I'll be sharing this magnificent area of our country there.  Yellowstone was our first National Park, founded in 1872.  Currently there are 59 Parks and I have been fortunate to visit 15 of them... so far!  

Our National Park Service is celebrating it's 100th anniversary on August 25th, to commemorate that special occasion, I am going to be doing a series of watercolors of some of my and YOUR favorite scenes in our National Parks.  If you have a digital photo of your favorite place in a National Park, send it to me at and tell me why it has a special memory for you! 
Who knows what might happen, you may see it here!!!