Monday, March 27, 2017

Cruisin’ the Boulevard, Petaluma’s Annual Salute to American Graffiti

For the past four years, I have had the honor of being the event artist for a fantastic local event, celebrating the filming and enduring fun of the movie American Graffiti, Cruisin' the Boulevard. Largely filmed in Petaluma, Ca. during the summer of 1972, our town boasts the most notorious movie scene locations, many of which are near to the exact condition they were at the time of the filming, some 45 years later. Voted in 1998 to the American Film Institute's list of 100 superlative films, American Graffiti is a splendid time capsule for the American teen experience of 1962 and a gleaming visual history of downtown Petaluma.
My contribution to the cause has been to create art that celebrated a pre-chosen theme for the year’s event. Three of the following 4 paintings are available for purchase in their original, one-of-a-kind, 24 x 30 inch acrylic on canvas, or as digital, limited edition, Breathing Color canvas reproductions made by Digital Grange. For more information about these specific paintings, please visit the Cruisin’ the Boulevard website and look under Event Art

There's plenty of time to make plans to visit this year's Cruisin' the Boulevard celebration and I would adore meeting you at my booth, downtown P-town on May 20th, 2017. Thank you for your interest!

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Dramatic Northern California Sunset with Windmill

The day this dramatic sunset scene enveloped our lovely county, I knew I had struck creative gold. My heart raced, because I was driving home from visiting my mom, in Marin County, south of where we live. My conundrum was WHERE and HOW could I view and photograph the setting sun, as time was of the essence and I am greedy. The more inspirational pictures I have in my file, the better.

Adding to the rush of my excitement was the sight of our annual Sonoma Marin Fair, visible from my position on the crowded freeway at rush-our. Against the unfolding drama of the heavens, I could see the Ferris Wheel and other attractions starting to glow with their neon goodness against the darkening midway. What to do. I couldn't think straight and I wanted to be in the right spot to get the scene I could already picture in my head.  Then I remembered: MY SON WAS AT THE FAIR! Frantically, I called him praying that he would somehow accept my phone call, amidst the joy and chaos that is the summer fair at dusk, teenagers, freedom, COTTON CANDY, kettle corn... 

But he is a good boy. He ANSWERED! (And he HEARD me!) He took the exact picture I was lusting for...Fodder for a future painting (which I have actually started!), but it freed me up for this baby:

Sunset over Stony Point ©2014           Acrylic on Canvas 24 x 18"

Lucky me! Although I was fairly squirmy with anticipation, I was able to calmly plot another location to hoard a different photo exploration of the crazy-beautiful sky. The above painting is the result of my terrific fortune. This gorgeous setting was already in the que for a painting with a late summer brooding, grey sky (that I have NOT painted yet), but I had a feeling it would look good in these colors, too. Before I started to paint, I entered it in a different local fair, later that summer. Proudly, it won first place and I sold it to a very dear friend in time for it to become the ultimate anniversary gift for my OTHER very dear friend. Wow! That was a fortunate sequence of events!

Monday, April 18, 2016

Commissioned Painting - Penngrove California

I was quite thrilled when a friend purchased this painting, spontaneously, a few years back. I was even more excited (and honored) when this same friend commissioned me to paint his family ranch. He is the proud son of Italian immigrants and cherishes this property, dearly. Although I could not get photo resources to help me paint the ranch from the perspective I wished (due to trees and the fact that I'd have to be in a raised angle above a busy road), but I did my best to piece together elements to turn my visual hope into a completed painting.

Here is the final result and detail shots:

Tarca Family Ranch ©2014       36" x 24" Acrylic on Canvas

Once the painting was complete, my handy hubby was kind enough to create this beautiful custom frame made with vintage barn wood. My customer/dear friend and his family were delighted with the result and I am elated to have such savvy "repeat customers!" Win, win one and all!

If you have any questions or comments, please let me know. I sure appreciate it!

Friday, April 15, 2016

Plein Air Ranch Painting Fail

 A few years back a girlfriend of mine came over to paint, plein air in my back field. I've never done that before and I'm sorry to say, I spent at least eight times the amount of effort back in the studio, so I don't think I can really have credit for this being a true in the open air piece. Oh well - I had a lot of fun and loved the completed painting SO much, I got over it. 

Painting, like so many things we do in life, is like exercise. You have to work at it routinely. One of these days I'm going to try to create more spontaneous "muscles" in my work...  But for now, I'm grateful for the painting muscles I do have!  

 Springtime at Rancho Durenberger © 2013              9 x 12" Acrylic on Canvas

Happily for me, a dear friend saw this painting in my kitchen and bought it on the spot. Shortly after that he commissioned me to paint his family's ranch! I wonder if "ranch painting" could be my thing? 

(I like it!)

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Petaluma California Ranch Painting

A few years ago I painted this lovely ranch that I would see each morning on the drive to take my kids to school in Petaluma, California. I was constantly surprised by how different it could look in various light and nature conditions. I intend to paint it again, and again in the future, but for now I am grateful it was completed and suited the vision I set out to capture. Last year I had the good fortune of meeting the wonderful family who live on this incredible property - and THEY BOUGHT the painting! Yay!

Jewel of the Backroads ©2014 by Elise Durenberger                   9 x 12" Acrylic on Canvas

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Iconic Red Truck meets Petaluma Back Road

The morning commute has always been something of a blessing and a curse, after all I was not born a morning person. But routine is the key to life and for the better part of the last three years, I spring from the covers, wake the zombies and get us out the door and off to various schools on time. With little conversation the "mom bus" makes its rounds and on the way, I am privileged to some amazing scenery. 

 Our dear and FORTUNATE friends have this view to enjoy, EVERYDAY of their lives. Even this shot through my dirty windshield, shows the charm of their sleepy valley. I've been threatening to paint it for years. 

Old Red on Roblar ©2015 by Elise Durenberger

THAT day, is finally here. {I'm SO excited!} Finally! 

This is my friend, James, and his Fire Engine Red, 1934 Ford Pick-up Truck. His gorgeous vehicle was in the original American Graffiti movie and is kind of famous in my neck of the woods, so I decided to compliment the American Flag in my landscape with this beauty...

Red Truck - close up.
 American Flag - Close up.
Old Barn and Old Glory - close up.

Good to get this one off the "to paint" list. Although I have a feeling, I'll revisit this lovely valley (in paint) again. 

- Elise

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Another new painting!

I've been on a huge painting binge! Here is one more from a recent series, unofficially called "The Morning Drive." Currently on display in a local bakery cafe and available for purchase:

Petaluma Reflections ©2015 by Elise Durenberger (Approximately 14 x 11")


Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Recent paintings, currently for sale and on display at the Bovine Bakery, Petaluma, Ca.

 Breakfast with the Ladies ©2015 by Elise Durenberger    (Approximately 14 x 11 inches)

Lucky Cows ©2015  by Elise Durenberger (Approximately 16 x 20 inches)

Sophie's Selfie ©2015 by Elise Durenberger (Approximately 16 x 20 inches)

Meacham Morning Sunbath ©2015 by Elise Durenberger (Approximately 14 x 11 inches)

Petaluma Reflections ©2015 by Elise Durenberger (Approximately 14 x 11 inches)

Splendor on the Morning Drive ©2015 by Elise Durenberger (Approximately 24 x 12 inches)

Please contact me for pricing information and availability. 



Wednesday, April 22, 2015

It's been FAR too long since I've popped in to the land of blog. I've missed you, desperately. 

I'm old now.

At least, as old as I've ever been. That FEELS old!

Anyway, I've been painting. I've been painting a LOT! What I really struggle with is how to transition this blog from the way I enjoyed it as a paper-crafty person, to the person I am now. It's been my goal to blog about my painting process, but I don't know really know who I would be writing to.

So, this is me. I'm just going to toss some stuff out, so it's here... in cyber space.

If you enjoy what you see, or have any questions, please let me know! 

Thank you!

(Ooooow. Time for new graphics.)


Monday, February 3, 2014

How I Fell In Love With Painting Old Cars...

A few years back, I re-discovered a beautiful, roadside destination in the Alexander
Valley in the heart of the wine country, Sonoma County, California.  I used to stop 
there frequently when my kids were small, but it had been a while....

HOW it was that I forgot...?  I can't even explain...  LOOK at how adorable it is!
If you've never been, you should SEE the inside!  Yummy FOOD/darling vintage
collectibles and gifts..  Make a trip to the Jimtown Store an important item on 
your bucket list...  TRUST me, you'll love it! 

In addition to the wonderful ambiance and outstanding food, there's THIS classic,
 former firetruck, converted to be the perfect icon and mobile advertisement... 
and I HAD to paint it.  The above image is a photo of a painting that 
I completed a few summers back.  It all happened innocently enough...   
I'm no car fanatic, but how could you not fall in love with this baby?

Little did I know that it would lead to more....

I'm SO excited to share with you that I am the artist for 
Petaluma's Cruisin' the Boulevard, our town's salute to 
the iconic coming of age movie, American Graffiti
shot in our little corner of California over 40 years ago. 

It's a HUGE honor and a fabulous celebration.  If you have the
opportunity to be in this area, May 15th, 16th & 17th, I hope you'll
consider joining the immense fun when the entire downtown goes
back in time...  Where were YOU in '62?  LOL

More on this painting and my process to come...  

Thanks for cruisin' on through!

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Pet Portraits by Elise Durenberger

Testing, 1, 2....  Testing!  Hello!!!!  {Is this thing on?}

If I have ANY friends left in blogland, I have MANY amends to make.
I've been out in the world, having picked up and "old trail" and I forgot
to take you with me... My apologies!  I'm still the proud owner of FAR
too many stamps & paper crafty supplies {and DREAMS!}, but this is
me, 2.0 {or 40-something...!} stepping out, into the light of PAINTER
girl, woman.  Following a semester of "re-entry" education in Adobe 
classes, and a LOT of paint under my nails, I'm working to update my blog 
to feature my true calling, fine art painting.  This painting I have shared, 
above, is a commission piece I completed last month and delivered
 to the over-joyed kitty companion...  It was a great thrill and wonderful 
reminder of my mission, long pursued, but often taken for granted. 
 I look forward to sharing many of my recent pieces, some thoughts on
 how they were inspired & created, but also some exciting new projects, 
as they progress. Soon, I will be sharing a very exciting piece that was 
completed to mark a very cool, annual celebration we have in our area 
to commemorate a classic movie that was filmed right in the historic
 down town..

I hope you'll consider checking in with me as I update this blog to better 
reflect the art that is the most important to me at this time in my journey...  

{Not to say I won't pop out a crafty-driven project from time to time...!}

Thank you, with all of the gratitude of my heart!

Friday, November 1, 2013

Welcome to the Third Annual Handmade Holidays blog hop!

Hello out there, crafty friends!  This is a GREAT day to be in the blog-a-verse!
It is with a jubilant heart, that I get to share with you, an  inkalicious goodie that I 
have created with some of the juiciest, western images I have seen in a LONG 
time...This one will get yer' spurs spinin'! LOOK at the chaps on THEM cowboys!

Oooooow, doggies!  I have struck it rich in STAMP country!  It is with my chest puffed 
up in pride, that I confess to y'all that I am participating in a super crafty event, represent
-ing this FABULOUS stamp company, 100 Proof Press...   Y'er WELCOME, if you've 
not heard of them before, and if you have...   LUCKY yooooooou!  I can't EVEN recount 
to you, with proper emphasis, HOW DAZZLING a shopping trip through their numerous
images and quality red rubber, options-a-plenty and CREATIVE opportunity beYOND 
your wildest imagination, it was for this here, lil' lady... { I'm in L-O-V-E!}  Anywhoo, a fist 
full of some SUPER nostalgic & perfectly rendered images MADE MY CRAFTY adventure 
the stuff-o-legends, babies.  I'm DElighted! But enough about MY enthusiasm...    

Blog Hop details, down yonder:

Welcome to the Third Annual Handmade Holidays blog hop!! The 
best crafters, designers, and makers have come together to 
create and share  a series of thoughtful, handmade gifts 
for the holidays 
during this 3 day blog hop. Our goal is to inspire you to 
create something from the heart this holiday season as 
well as share how to use our products in fun, 
innovative ways. We intend this hop to serve as a resource 
to you for this holiday season and for years to come.

Hop along to each blog in the list. Each day, from 

November 1 through November 3, 2013, we’ll be posting a 
brand new list of blogs to hop to. 
Comment on each blog, share your favorite 
posts over social media, and then use the Rafflecopter 
widget at the bottom of each post to enter to win the 
Grand Prize, a gift basket filled with crafty swag from 
the companies on the hop! We’re ready to inspire, 
share, and create – are you ready to hop?

For more details, check out the MOTHERSHIP of stamps, 100 Proof Press and their BLOG!  
*Bonus!  You can read MORE about these lovely ladies...   {And tell 'em I sent ya!}

But wait: THERE'S MORE! 

Before you ride off into the sunset, just a few quick tips on my LOVE AFFAIR use of 
these great stamps and some tips on how to make a delightfully cloudy, masked sky!

1) Stamp first image {cowboys} onto vanilla cardstock.  Stamp again, with
 same image onto post-it note.  Cut out image and place it over original stamped
image.  Stamp sun burst image, slightly above cowboys.  Stamp again, onto new
post-it.  Fussy cut and place on original as shown in #1.

2) Create clouds by cutting cloud shapes from sticky panel of post-it note.  Place
as desired over stamped sun and cowboy scene.  With ColorBox® die ink, sponge
blue sky background over entire stamped surface, concentrating densest use of ink
across clouds and upper sky.  

3) Remove cloud masks.

4) Replace cloud masks, slightly lower and skewed to one side, then lightly sponge
 more blue or grey ink across where the mask and the white cloud meet.  Remove cloud
mask, once again, and then sponge with small dabs across the bottom of the cloud, trying to 
leave a small white rim. This gives the illusion of sunlight shining through and around
the cloud - the results are WORTH the effort.  Don't be afraid to do a practice piece! 
It's SO worth it!

Rafflecopter Details: 

I sure HOPE you'll think so, anyway...  But for NOW, I must mosey down the 
blog hop trail...  SURE HOPE you'll join me!  THANK you, so MUCH!  It was
great gettin' inky with ya'll!  Enjoy the view and HAPPY TRAILS!

Friday, October 25, 2013

My dearest blog friends... 

HOW I have missed you!  While I have recently stepped away from a lot of regular
design team obligations {*sob!} I am in NO way about to quit blogging!  Just wanted 
to share a joyful response to some of your KIND emails...  I'm STILL here!

Just been masquerading as a student in some INTENSELY fun and extremely challenging
Adobe classes at my local Junior college...   And HERE is some of the CRAZY fun I've 
been partaking in...   Yee Haw!  I'm NOT leaving the blog world, NOR my friends 
(as long as you can forgive my extreme lapse in commenting.....!?!}

I'm working hard to gain some skills to improve my blog and begin a new
creative chapter to share with y'all.  I hope you'll still have ME!  

Love and crafty thoughts to ALL-O-YOU!

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Just Us Girls and a FOND farewell....

I have been EXTREMELY blessed to be a member of Just Us Girls for a LONG time!
In case you've never enjoyed the fruits of their revolving challenges, YOU have been
missing out!  Me?  I've been an inspired participant, a THRILLED chic of the week, a
SUPER delighted guest designer, and for a good three years now, an ECSTATIC 
design team member...  {WHERE, oh where, has the time gone!?!} 

It's been a GREAT ride!  

 I am FILLED with gratitude!  - AND a whole lot of crafty memories...  
THIS is my last post as a JUG-ster, and my last week as a hostess for all 
the fun and SUPER sonic inspiration...  A super fallish photo collage is 
my parting gift...  I hope you'll consider playing along!

Also, my dear team mate, Tangii, has also decided to step down from
Just Us Girls...  My special salute to you, Tangii, and your brilliant color
skills and all around crafty TALENT!  YOU will be greatly missed!
THANK YOU for gracing us with your brilliant work! *Mwah!*

On to some crafty BUSINESS.....

You might know that I am a lover of the "scene" card....  So this happened
quite naturally.  This background was created with STAMP pads, and a 
smattering of water color with stamp ink!  {It was INKALICIOUS, babies!}

But then I pretty much covered the whole thing up with delicious stampy
elements and precious pretty bits and baubles...  But HEY!  That's how
the stamp bounces...   IT'S THE JOURNEY!  {Says the girl with VERY 
inky fingers!} Worth all the effort, as far as I'm concerned!

{Autumn is my FAVORITE season for stamping!}

But speaking of stamping!  Ack!  Do you KNOW these ladies...  the fabby force of
JUST US GIRLS!  They took this photo montage ALL THE WAY to AMAZING!

Please, TREAT YOURSELF to a very Juggified version of PUMPKIN SPICE!
It's a cornucopia-o-inspiration!

Thank YOU, for the YEARS of gushing and swooning that you
indulged me in...  {I LOVE those GIRLS!} I am humbled by
ALL that I see, learn from and am inspired by, in the crafty blog
world.  You have NO idea how much healing, hand holding and
friendship making has occurred here...  EVEN WHEN I HAVEN'T
been 1/10th of the friend I mean to be, this place has continued
to take care of me!  I am VERY, very blessed.

Thank you, again, for your love and inspiration!

Supplies - 

C/S - Wplus9 Design Studio
Stamps - Wplus9 Deisgn Studio (Sentiment and Pumpkins)
               Tim Holtz/Stampers Anonymous (Truck)
Designer Elements - October Afternoon
Button - Buttons Galore & More
Twine - Jillibean Soup