Sunday, September 24, 2017

An Armchair Travel Artist

Thanks to Google street maps I can now travel the world from my studio, visiting the streets of towns, villages, and cities in search of the architectural subjects I love to draw and paint. Last year I created a small series of painting depicting food shops and taverns. I'm now working on a series of street scenes focusing on unique regional architecture.

First in this series is Ye Olde Cock Tavern at 22 Fleet St. in London.

Pencil & watercolor  11x8"

Monday, September 4, 2017

EYE CANDY studio newsletter #141

I’m putting my pride in my back pocket and going all “commercial” with this latest newsletter. I have to. It is a matter of self-preservation. My problem is I tend to get too full of myself, thinking I write such clever and entertaining newsletters, and from time to time I need to take steps to deflate my puffed up ego. It is not easy admitting this, which I know comes as a big surprise to many of you. I don’t want you to think badly of me, so I’m taking this precautionary step. The idea is for you to think: “wow, that Renzulli is really a humble guy, and is willing to do whatever it takes to remain that way”. That is my goal, and if I have to lower myself by trying and sell my art I will do it. 

So with that introduction out of the way, what do I have to sell that will catch your eye, tickle your fancy, and say to you, “I belong on your wall”? I’m offering a series of small watercolors that will provide a bit of spiritual and visual respite in these hectic days of ours. They are all matted with backing and are ready for framing.

Sunny Fields
Green Fields
The Wash
    Each of the above – image 8x4” plus a 2” mat     $75 each or 3 for $180 plus $7 Shipping      

No Name Barn  4x8 w 2.5" mat   $75 plus $7 Shipping 

Weary Landscape 6x9 w 2.5" mat   $100 plus $7shipping



Salmon Sky  5x8 w 2.5" mat  $75 plus $7 Shipping

It looks like the exhibition for my river portfolio will be opening sometime in late October. I will be posting more details when plans are finalized.  There are currently 24 paintings in the portfolio, mostly watercolors with a few acrylics on canvas. I’ve been working on this for almost 2 years, and look forward to seeing all of the work on display. Also in the works is a hardcover book of the complete portfolio, as well as a few “extras”. Once that is finished it will be time to move on to my next project, whatever that may be.

Looking forward to Fall,


"Don't follow the critics too much. Art appreciation, like love, cannot be don by proxy: it is a very personal affair and is necessary to each individual."  Robert Henri, The Art Spirit 


Wednesday, August 30, 2017

8-30-17 Capellini with eggplant & mushrooms

Me: I have to decide what to do for dinner tonight.
Patience: Just use what ever is in the fridge
Me: Okay

The pickings were slim- a half a package of mixed mushrooms and two Japanese eggplants from the porch garden. BUT – there was also a jar of sundried tomatoes, some cream, and a bottle of sweet vermouth. Who needs anything else.


1.     Angel hair pasta (we use 4 oz. for the two of us.)
2.     Two Japanese eggplants sliced crosswise
3.     Mixed mushrooms
4.     Sundried tomatoes in oil – coarsely chopped
5.     Olive oil (don’t use extra virgin for cooking.)
6.     Onion and Garlic
7.     Fresh thyme, parsley, and basil
8.     Sweet vermouth
9.     Heavy whipping cream – about 3 tbsp.
10. Red pepper flakes – optional


Prepare the onion and garlic in olive oil until soft. Add the mushrooms, eggplant, and herbs, and cook over high heat until everything starts to brown.  Lower the heat and add a splash of wine and the tomatoes and continue cooking over low heat.  If everything gets to dry, add a splash of chicken broth.  When you add the pasta to the water add the cream to the sauce and stir.  Add the past to the sauce, mix well, and serve. Be prepared for a temporary stint in culinary heaven.


This was wonderful the cook claimed unabashedly.  Patience loved it, and she is the ultimate food critic in our kitchen.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

8-24-17 Fettuccini with mushrooms and zucchini

Tonight’s challenge was to use some of our abundant tomato crop and the zucchini and portabella mushroom sitting in the fridge.


1.     Fettuccini
2.     Two fresh tomatoes – grated
3.     Zucchini
4.     Portabella mushroom, diced
5.     Onion and Garlic
6.     Celery
7.     Olive oil
8.     Fresh basil and tarragon
9.     Kalamata olives – about one tablespoon of pitted olives
10. Sweet vermouth or dry red wine


Prepare the onion, celery, and garlic soffritto in the olive oil.  Add the mushrooms and zucchini and cook over high heat until they start to brown (stir frequently to prevent burning.) Then add the tomatoes and simmer uncovered. While they are cooking add the herbs and a splash of wine. Before the past is ready add the olives.
Add the pasta to the pan and mix well.


Patience loved this. I enjoyed the dish and was pleased to have used the veggies that needed to be used.  It is satisfying to make sauces with our fresh tomatoes.  The kalamata olives add a nice touch of flavor.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

8-20-17 Linguine with shrimp

Tonight I used tomatoes from Patience’s front porch garden for the sauce that created a most delightful pasta dish.


1.     Linguine
2.     4 medium tomatoes
3.     Shrimp
4.     Asparagus cut in to 1 inch pieces,
5.     Fresh basil and dill
6.     Heavy whipping cream
7.     Olive oil
8.     Onion and garlic
9.     Sweet vermouth
10. Tomato paste


Cut the tomatoes in half and grate them on the large openings on a hand grater, preserving the pulp and discarding the skin. Prepare the onion and garlic in olive oil, then add the tomatoes and herbs to the pan and simmer to reduce the liquid. After 5-10 minutes add a splash of wine.  Cook the sauce for about 20-30 minutes, but the timing is not critical. The idea is to cook off the excess liquid.  I added about 2 inches of tomato paste to help thicken the sauce.  While the pasta is cooking add the shrimp and asparagus, and when the pasta is almost done, add the cream. (I nuked the asparagus for 1 minute to cut down on the cooking time in the sauce.


My concern about this dish early in the preparation turned out to be misplaced. It was utterly delicious, with a unique sweetness, thanks to the fresh tomatoes. I guess I will have to repeat this using processed tomatoes to see if there is a significant difference.

Try it - you won't be disappointed.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

8-9-17 Linguine with mushrooms & zucchini

What can I say - it's zucchini season

1.     Linguine
2.     Mixed mushrooms
3.     Zucchini – sliced crosswise
4.     Sundried tomatoes in olive oil- coarsely chopped
5.     Olive oil
6.     Shallots and garlic
7.     Fresh basil and oregano
8.     Sweet vermouth
9.     Panko

Cook the shallots and garlic in olive oil until soft, then add the mushrooms, tomatoes, herbs, and zucchini and cook over med-high heat until they begin to brown. Turn the heat to low, add a splash of wine and simmer while waiting for the pasta.  Add the pasta and some pasta water as needed, mix well, and serve with a sprinkling of panko.

A tasty, quick meal, and a good way to get rid of all the zucchini that seems to be everywhere this time of the year.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017


I posted my first blog on August 8, 2007, and followed that with 1,744 more posts, counting today’s. I guess this confirms my wife’s opinion of me – a wordy little bastard.  But in my defense these posts include artwork, recipes, and assorted photos, as well as an endless parade of reflections, narratives, opinions, and other nonsense.

Since I have nothing else to say (for now), today I will post one painting or drawing from each of the 10 years.