Sunday, February 23, 2014

A Day of Art at Rogers Gardens

Is there any better way to spend a Saturday than sitting at Roger's Gardens painting watercolors and hanging out with friends? I'd be hard pressed to think of a nicer one.

I got all my art supplies ready the night before. The bottles are liquid watercolor which makes for brilliant colors.  Brushes? Check. Pencils? Check. All set to go.

 The artists were asked to bring a finished painting to sell. This says "The morning pouring everywhere, it's golden glory in the air. ~ Longfellow" 

 My talented friend, Linda Ruddy, was there painting in oils. She brought hot tea and china cups, very elegant. We took over the gazebo for our paint station. 

The gazebo was originally from Main Street, Disneyland. We were grateful for the shade.

My awesome mother-in-law, who's a master gardener stopped by and we grabbed some lunch.  You know you're in California when you can get a tofu taco from a food truck.

Me demonstrating how mastic works, just paint on the mastic which a gum rubber then paint watercolor over it. when everything is dry you can rub the mastic off giving you a nifty batik look. This picture was taken by the talented photographer, Teresa Carlisle, who stopped by to say hi.

 Rogers Gardens has lots of beautiful potted plants for sale. 

 Some flowers from a hanging basket.

 Linda Ruddy's very fine oil painting. I love the soft colors in this. We talked a lot about the comforting power of art and loving what we love, be it dolls, toys or flowers.


 I started out the day painting with timid colors, but as the day went on I tried pushing the saturation and trying new things.  Whenever a kid would stop by to see what we were doing I offered to let them make their own painting. I was impressed by how fearless little artists are. Our conversations usually went something like this...

Me: "Are you an artist?"
Kid: "Yes, I am."
Me: "Would you like to paint a painting?"
Kid: "Yes, I would. It's what I'm bestest at. I'm really good at art."

Then the kid would take a brush and dive in. I was impressed with their creativity and self confidence. After that I tried to be braver and not worry so much about perfection.

A quick flower study.

There were dozens of artists painting all over the gardens. It was fun to walk around and see what everyone was drawing. So many different styles and mediums! 

 My friends, Karyn and Eden stopped by. Eden and I did mastic paintings.

At the end of the day, after eight hours of painting, I packed up my things and headed home, tired and happy.

Thanks to everyone who stopped by, Karyn and Eden, Mandl and John, Margaret and Ronn, Theresa and Larry.  You made a lovely day into a completely perfect day.

And a big thank you to Theresa Marino and all the kind people at Rogers Gardens for making the Day of Art happen. I'm already looking forward to the next one.



"Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up." ~ Pablo Picasso


  1. Loved this post! Thanks for sharing your enchanting day of art at the gardens, your watercolors are breathtaking and I love that some young artists came and joined in. This makes me want to join next time!

  2. Roger's is one of the few things I miss from Orange County! Always took out-of-town visitors there. Sounds like a lovely event, and your paintings are wonderful.

  3. Oh thank you for sharing. Loved reading it and the results of the day are beautiful!!!

  4. Hi Marilyn,
    Yes, I enjoyed the day and was tired but happy at the end too. Nice blog post...especially loved your interaction with the children! I'm not surprised.
    Best wishes, Linda

    1. I was tired too! And the little kids painting was the best part. So fun! <3 (And thanks for the lovely tea.)

  5. What a beautiful day! My heart cries for my 13 yo son who says he "hates art". He had an art teacher in elementary school who was too stuck on "rules" and not open enough to seven-year-olds individual creativity/interpretation, and sadly ruined my son for art. I keep trying, but so far haven't found the right approach to interest him again. Keep teaching, Toymaker! Keep offering the opportunity because every child is artistic in their own way. :)

    1. Kansas Girl, I ache too for your son's creative spirit. It makes me mad when grownups want kids to be critics before they are allowed to find their voice. gggrrrrr!

      But don't give up hope. My son's not an illustrator but he is very creative in making things. He's found his voice in woodshop and metal shop in high school. Encourage your son to make things and just play, whether it's legos, cooking, building forts or siege engines. He'll find his way back. Hugs, Marilyn. <3