Painting with Pikazo – Try it – You’ll like it


Honey, did you eat something from the garden?


You don’t look too good. I think you better stay in bed today.

Pikazo, the new app for Apple iphones and ipads is selling like hot cakes. Not surprising. It’s really fun to play with. You, too, can be an artist and paint in the style of a famous painter or make up your own style. Here I used two photographs of mine, one of a friend and the other one of apple blossoms from the garden. Part of the fun is waiting to see what Pikazo comes up with after you choose your pictures. Every single Pikazo image requires about 3,000,000,000,000,000 calculations. Is it worth $3.00?  Yes! It’s a lot of fun.



I’ve been beta testing a new art app – Pikazo

And what to do now?????? Just saw what you are seeing and the color is way off. Delete post? Leave it up and  try to correct it? Pikazo knows how to do it right, but man, I can sure mess up it up. So I tried correcting my mistakes but the color is still not like my painitngs. You know what? Go to Pikazo and you’ll see the true color of these things. If I want to post on the internet any of my art work, I’d better try using white paint on a black piece of paper. Maybe that will work for me.


Image-1-2 2


Carla Saunders 1 copy iphoto export

Carla Saunders 1 copy 2

Karl Stiefvater, the app’s St. Louis-based inventor and his business partner, Noah Rosenberg asked a group of friends to beta test a new app. Lisa, wife and behind the scenes worker bee invited me to join the secret group. We weren’t given much instruction – just jump in and see what the app can do.  This app is amazing. I started out with a picture of one of my self portraits, then paired it with the style of a preset artist. I tapped the paint ! button and waited and soon Pikazo sent me a  painting based on the information from my two choices. But there is more! Under style there is a custom button. You can put in your own image, any kind of image from your photos or the internet. I put in one of my paintings. You are not limited to selfies in picture. Try anything, Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. That’s the fun of it. The app eggs you on to make just one more picture. The results are fantastic. Go over to the Apple app store and pick it up. It’s really fun.drawing glasses

drawing -painting sf


Pikazo’s painting using my sketch and my abstract painting



The possibilities are endless.

(ahh this is better color)

Painting and Drawing in Italy

cathedral    Serravalle                                                                                      acrylic on canvas 12″ x 16″ 2015

Our group was made up of five students and one teacher, Eva Bovenzi. John, Eva’s husband came too. We met 40 miles outside of Venice, in Vittorio Veneto, Treviso. We stayed at Palazzo Galletti. Built in the 14th century, the little palazzo was on a quiet cobblestone street in Serravalle, the ancient part of town. We worked for 8 days in Alma Ortolan’s downstairs studio. Besides restoring frescoes, she gives her own workshops in fresco technique. After breakfast, our group would meet for an image presentation. Then, we went off in different directions to sketch. After lunch we worked in the studio, which was followed by a critique and dinner. My small suitcase on rollers, was filled with art supplies. I packed two 12” x 16” boards which were used as support for presized canvas that  wrapped around the board and was tacked with artist’s tape. I took sketchpads, drawing materials, tubes of acrylic paint, brushes, a palette, rags, water container and a backpack to carry my art supplies when I went out sketching. Completed rolled paintings fit diagonally into my suitcase when it was time to pack and go home.

Del Carmine Madonna

Taking watersoluble crayons and sketchpads, Arina and I walked through the quiet old town to sit in Chiesa di S. Giovanni Battista. Choosing the statue of Madonna del Carmine I sketched for more than an hour while listening to my friend happily humming as she sketched sunlight touching a column.

Woods Serravalle


dog ItalyThe next morning, I walked up behind the houses into the trees. While I was sitting on the ground sketching, one of the locals walked into my view. Stooping down he filled his straw basket with raw walnuts. His black and white dog kept running up to me bringing me a stick to throw. Thinking of Cezanne and loving the background color coming from behind the tree I walked back to the studio.


After a few well-intentioned strokes my new painting took on a mind of it’s own.

Ugly Challeges Trained Brain





Sometimes it’s good to throw out your education. Instead of drawing with your accustomed hand, draw with your unaccustomed hand. Instead of following the rules in order to make a good photograph, go out and take a lot of ugly shots. We get all hung up on trying to make a good painting, a good photograph, or maybe we are trying to write a poem other people will like. Sometimes, it’s good to throw out all that stuff and make a mess. You never know, you might get something you like.  The idea of taking ugly shots came from Otto von Munchow’s challenge, Go out and photograph something ugly.