Thursday, December 12, 2019

UK vote

Thinking of our UK friends today, and their important election.

Sunday, December 8, 2019

Room Interiors #12

Surely King Louis XIV would have adored this magnificent gold sunburst, glowing proudly on a wall inside the Tangier home of Nicoló Castellini Baldissera. The Leo in me loves it too.

Nicoló’s Moroccan home, called Casa Tosca, is just one of several colorful homes and gardens featured in his new book, Inside Tangier. It’s a gorgeous book, and one that you’ll want this holiday season. Thank you for the painting inspiration, designer, and Guido Taroni, photographer.

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Room Interiors #11

James Kivior is the amazing talent behind @thepretentioushome on IG, and the creator of this magnificent tableau. His NY apartment is the epitome of maximalist style, with symbiotic explosions of layers, textures and colors. ... eye candy galore. One wall of his home is filled with framed Hermès scarves. (Be still my heart.) I collect them to wear, but he collects them to frame on his walls. So much fun going on in this one room alone, which he calls his kitchen.

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Room Interiors #10

I did some armchair travel today, to Morocco, for this watercolor.Warm sunshine bathes golden walls, and a perfectly placed pale pink chair, in this hallway in Tangier. The home, named Dar Chal, is filled with as much color and esprit as its Italian born owner and designer, Monica di Valmarana. She and her husband have put a lot of love into restoring this seaside home. Inside, there are many happy, colorful rooms, which I’ll be sure to make more watercolor sketches of. Love the designs on the ceiling, which were cast from the pretty Moravian star light, and I also love seeing what’s behind those magnificent Moorish doors.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Room Interiors #9

Here’s a handsome powder room. It resides in a gorgeous Jacobian home, named Lockslea, in Brookline, Massachusetts. The recently restored historic home has such historic provenance that it was featured in a “House Beautiful” article in 1917. Yes, you read that date correctly. Originally designed by renowned Chapman and Frazer Architects, Lockslea has been lovingly restored by Roma & York. @romaandyork

Photo credit,; Design + Build by Roma and York; Paint color, Farrow and Ball, Hague blue (which I think I nailed in my watercolor, although it I found it very difficult to photograph); Lighting design by Lucia Lighting (Visual Comfort); Faucet by Newport Brass; Custom sink, First Class Marble and Granite.

Sunday, November 17, 2019

Room Interiors #8

This is precisely the spot where I would like to sit in, with Dan, while enjoying a glass of aged Tawney port, some Stilton cheese, a ripe pear and toasted walnuts. A girl can dream, can’t she?

The inspiration for this watercolor sketch came from the pages of Veranda magazine. The cocktail lounge of this Hudson Valley home was designed by Lynne Stair of McMillen and architect Cynthia Filkoff, and the photo credit belongs to Annie Schlechter. Love the high gloss finished walls, painted in Avocado, by Benjamin Moore, and those copper velvet pillows on the chairs are scrumptious. The portraits on the wall a very to the manor born, don’t you agree? And although this is a rather stately and masculine room, it’s also very warm and welcoming.

Carson? More port, please.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Thursday, November 7, 2019

Room Interiors #6

What a welcoming foyer, with a big splash of red with that Ming sideboard, pagoda mirror, Staffordshire pups—and how about that blue door? Sketchbombing Kathy MacDonald Marshall.

Friday, November 1, 2019

Room Interiors #5

Belated birthday wishes to Meg Ruggles Hosler of Meggie H. Interiors. Here is a sketch of her fireplace wall in her beautiful living room, with a coral wall and snappy chinoiserie. Cheers!

Monday, October 28, 2019

Room interiors #4

Being a sucker for all things orange, I instantly fell in love with the beautiful orange chinoiserie fabric (by Quadrille) on this chair. So pretty! The ballroom in this Manchester-by-the-Sea home was decorated by honeycollinsinteriors.

Friday, October 25, 2019


Chase 30 x 30”

Here’s a fun new painting, showing ‘Dynamic motion,’ the theme of this year’s Crane Estate/Castle Hill art show and sale, coming up soon.  This is a painting that I sketched out several years ago, but for some reason I just never finished it, it was probably a time constraint thing, as I work a full-time job. But when I heard the theme of this year’s Crane Estate show, I knew I had to resurrect this painting and finish it.

Thursday, October 17, 2019

The field

The Field 4 x 6”

I thought it would be fun to challenge myself to a two-hour quick draw. This is a very tiny equestrian painting, although the check not frame makes it look larger than it is, and one of the small pieces that I will put into the upcoming Crane Estate art show. Oil on canvas.

Tuesday, October 15, 2019


Fresh paint— and a very small piece at only 5 x 7.“ This will be one of four paintings that I will be exhibiting at the annual Crane Estate art show (Castle Hill, Ipswich), coming up in a few weeks. The theme of this year’s show is “Dynamic Motion.”

Monday, September 9, 2019

Tomato + goat cheese tart

It's tomato season and the days are finally cooler, so it's a fine time to fire up the oven to make this colorful beauty! Here's how to make this cheesy tomato tart. I used Martha Stewart's Pâte brisée recipe for the crust, which makes enough for two, so why not make a second one to bring to work or give to a neighbor? You could also freeze one half of your dough for a later time. The recipe below is for one tart.

Once you've got the dough made and placed into your pan of choice (round, square or rectangular shape) you must let it rest in the fridge or freezer for 30 minutes first, or else when you blind bake it the dough will pull away from the top of your pan edges and shrink.

To blind bake your tart shell:
Once your tart dough has rested, remove the shell from the fridge or freezer, prick bottom with a fork, and line with parchment paper cut to fit. Fill with dried beans or metal pie weights. Bake in preheated a 375° oven until the crust is just beginning to brown, about 15 minutes. Remove from the oven, and remove beans or weights. Return the crust to the oven, and bake until golden brown, about 10 minutes more. Remove from the oven, and set aside on a wire rack to cool before filling with our cheese mixture and tomatoes. Keep the oven on. 

To make the cheese filling:
While your tart is baking, make or the cheese filling. I like to use a mix of Boursin herbed cheese, goat cheese, and cream cheese. The cheese is rich, so I also add in some lemon zest or a tsp. of dijon mustard to brighten up the flavors. 
1 package Boursin cheese
1/3 cup goat cheese
1/3 cup cream cheese
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper

Mix all these ingredients into a bowl, then spread on the bottom of your tart. 

Top with the tomatoes:
Now comes the creative part... adding the sliced tomatoes! You may use any color or size of tomatoes  and make any pattern you wish. Slice the tomatoes into 1/4" slices, and the smaller grape tomatoes can be cut in half. For this tart I used a random pattern using several colors and sizes of tomatoes, but you could also use just one color tomato and layer them neatly, or alternate two colored tomatoes. 

To bake:
Once the tomatoes are on the tart spray with an olive oil spray (or brush with olive oil) to help the tomatoes brown. Place the tart on a sheet pan, and bake it in  a 375° for 15-20 minutes oven until the tomatoes and cheese just start to bubble. Remove tart from oven, and place on a wire rack to cool slightly before serving. Enjoy!

Saturday, August 24, 2019

August Marsh

August Marsh 12 x 12"

My love affair with our North Shore marshes continues. I mean... isn’t this view sublime?! So after snapping such a pretty photo of my fave salt marsh last night (see below) I had to paint it this afternoon, while it was still fresh in my mind. This is Fox Creek Marsh in Ipswich, MA.

Sunday, May 26, 2019

Madame butterfly

NEW WORK: Madame butterfly 8 x 10

I painted this to pay homage to our 11-year old yellow magnolia tree that died over this winter. We had a lot of rain last fall followed by intense cold temps. Lots of perennial plants in my garden died, also. The saddest part was that it was planted in remembrance of a fine young woman who died of her own hand, far too young. 

Saturday, April 13, 2019

Room Interiors #3

I was in a turquoise sort of mood earlier, having a scrumptiously lazy morning in le boudoir, watching (or listening to) a French film while making this little watercolor sketch. Inspired by the pages of Veranda magazine.

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Painting donation to MGH

My Ipswich salt marsh painting was unveiled today at a reception at Massachusetts General Hospital  in Boston, where it will hang on the Blake 6 transplant floor. This painting is my humble way of thanking the lovely and amazing doctors, nurses, etc. — particularly on the Blake 6 transplant floor — who cared for me before, during and after my kidney transplant surgery and subsequent infections. I had a nice, cozy bed there for a total of 22 days over three stays. The staff at MGH are all titans in their medical profession. When it’s eventually hung on the walls of the transplant floor, I hope that this painting, which I have named ‘Radiance’, will bring joy to other transplant patients as they recover from their surgeries. This was such a nice way for them to acknowledge my little gift.. #forevergrateful #MGH

Below is the note I put on the back of my Radiance postcard, which I will keep a supply of in the Family Room on the transplant floor at MGH. I hope it supports and inspires future transplant patients!

Warm greetings, transplant friend—
Transplantation is an extraordinary journey that tests the limits of one’s strength and courage. In addition to commitment and faith, it requires strong mental and physical preparation as well as endurance. But you already know that. If you can endure transplantation, you can conquer anything that you set your mind to. The tough part is over. Now it’s time to let your body heal so your inner radiance and spirit shines through again. Wishing you well as you continue on your own transplant journey.

—Diane Carnevale
Kidney transplant recipient
October, 2018

Saturday, April 6, 2019

Ranunculous blossoms

Happy and cheery spring ranunculous flowers will always remind me of my mom, who adored them... exclusively the yellow and orange blossoms. The ombré cooors of the golden blossom above reminds of the ruffles of a party dress.

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Radiance II

Radiance II    36 x 48"

Remember that Ipswich salt marsh painting that I made last October? This larger version of it, my thank-you gift to some very special people, is all dry and about to be wrapped up and delivered to its new home tomorrow! Stay tuned...

 to donate to the lovely Transplant staff at MGH, Boston to thank them for the fantastic care I received from them after my kidney transplant surgery in late October. More to come.

Thursday, March 7, 2019

Provençal fish

How lucky am I to get my fish delivered to my door each week? I prepped the sole that was left on my doorstep yesterday in a Provençal manner, with roasted garlic, kalamata olives, grape tomatoes, a dash of red pepper flakes and all anointed with lemon olive oil. Just bake for ten minutes and dinner is done. If you live on Boston’s North Shore you need this delivery service, too!