Saturday, February 26, 2011


in emergency room time.





Friday...don't know what happened to Thursday.

Friday, February 25, 2011


Although most of my work on canvas has been with acrylics, I have done some work with oil and am considering more. Here are a few of the oil paintings which I have included in a new album on my facebook page....




I enjoy working with oil because I can work slowly, taking my time and reworking the paint if needed.

I like working wit acrylic because it is fast, I can work intuitively, and I'm impatient. Go figure!!

Thursday, February 24, 2011


I have spent the past several weeks looking through old journals/sketch books from my years in the emergency seems to be one of things you do when the bulk of your time is in yesterdays and not tomorrows...and have decided to act on an idea I've had for a long time, editing and selecting the drawings to create a book I could publish. With the digital technology now available it can be done quite easily. The first version will consist of drawings and sketches with little or no text, but I will have the option to go back and add more narrative if I wish to do so. Here is the brief introductory note I've written for the book which I hope to have printed in the next several days.

When I left my practice in 1981 to pursue a career in art I sought part-time work in our emergency room, perhaps 20-30 hours per week. I was offered a position covering vacation time for the full time staff and would work full time for 3 months, alternating with 3 months off. It sounded I accepted the offer. Because I was covering vacations, I had no fixed work schedule and my shifts were very haphazard with no chance for me to develop a routine. Added to this were the difficulties of dealing with a fresh and painful divorce as well as a major change in my career.

My 4 years as an emergency room physician were stressful, demanding, and fatiguing, but I would not trade them for anything. Between the support of the staff and my ever present sketch book. I not only survived but perhaps even thrived a bit.

All drawings were done with a Parker 45 fountain pen.






Tuesday, February 22, 2011


I've spent the past few days editing and scanning drawings from my emergency room journals (1981 through 1985) in preparation for a small book I plan to create. They were an intense 4 years for a number of reasons, a major one being the absence of any fixed schedule at work. I worked full time for 3 months alternating with 3 months off. When I worked I covered vacation time for the full time staff and thus had no fixed routine, working 3 different shifts haphazardly. My state of mind was reflected in the sketches and nonsense that soon filled the journals, especially the images in my depiction of the days of the week.

Saturday, February 19, 2011


For the past 6-8 weeks I've been working almost exclusively with watercolor, so earlier this week I decided to spend at least some time on a new acrylic painting. I wanted to do something different, and after several thumbnail sketches decided on going vertical and stark. I chose a 48x24" canvas, put on my work shirt, and got my hands dirty. The result...

#1 I looked at this on the easel for several days before deciding I didn't like it and reworked the painting.

#2 This is the current state, which I prefer to the first one. Interestingly in the photos the first one is more appealing to me.

While playing with this barren tree trunk I have been working on the Cambridge watercolor and today completed the painting. I'll look at it for a few days to see if I need to make any adjustments.


Friday, February 18, 2011


One of the delightful results of the exhibition of the artwork from my trip to Italy has been the several commissions I've received. Two of them involved small mountainside villages.

Ticarico in southern Italy...watercolor...20x30

Village north of Rome...watercolor...20x30

Castelnuovo della Daunia in Apulia...watercolor...20x30

Thursday, February 17, 2011


After almost 10 years it was time to make some changes to the website that served me so well. Thanks to new technology it is now possible to create and manage a website with minimal effort and no understanding of the necessary technology. On the recommendation of a knowledgeable friend I chose to work with Otherpeoplespixals (OPP) and am pleased with the results. The advantage of the new site is the ability to easily manage it myself, adding and removing content as needed as well as reorganizing the artwork, links, etc..

My art is presented in 5 different galleries, based on the medium. I’ve also added a new feature called “What’s on the easel”, where every few weeks I will feature a different piece of work reflecting either something new, interesting, or specially priced.

I thoroughly enjoyed the entire process of setting up the site; it was amazingly easy, and I recommend it to anyone who may be considering such an undertaking. Check it out…

Here are 2 more small watercolor landscapes, plus the latest progress on the Cambridge commission.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011


at least that is that my current mind set. Of course it could be that I simply lack the ambition to tackle anything larger than 7x13", the size of the last 2 small watercolor landscapes. I expect that sooner or later I'll take on larger, but when I do I'll keep one foot in the smaller camp.

landscape #6

Landscape #7

Monday, February 14, 2011


small watercolor landscapes to add to the series. The composition/scene remains reasonably constant, only the colors and values vary.

landscape #3 5x7

landscape #4 6x8

I anticipate adding 2 or 3 more paintings to this series before moving on to something else.

Sunday, February 13, 2011


A life committed to art is not an easy one. The demands on creativity are many, and like most artists I often find myself facing the enormous daily question...What can I draw or paint that would be exciting, interesting, challenging, and of immense redeeming social the same time being quick and easy?

Clearly I was in a dippy mood when I wrote the above comment in my journal in 1983. Quickness and ease are usually not the guiding principals in creativity, although there certainly are times when that happens, often unexpectedly.

But, there are also times when I find myself wandering aimlessly about the studio (as much as one can wander in the space I have.) looking for something to do but not wanting to get into anything major, in other words, something quick and easy, and fortunately there is such a thing...the small watercolor landscape. I began doing these small paintings/sketches in the fall of 2009; they were the inspiration for what would become a regular e-newsletter from Gallery 5. After almost a years hiatus I have returned to this daily exercise. They are fun to do, instructive in learning the behavior of colors and pigments, and last but not least...they are quick and easy!

Here are two such landscapes. They bear a strong resemblance to one another by design; I am planing on series of paintings of the same general composition/scene using different colors, lighting, and values. I anticipate it being a fun exercise. Each piece is approximately 5x7".

Friday, February 11, 2011


Eating alone is not my favorite thing to do...EXCEPT...when I treat myself to a ciabatta lunch. Not any ciabatta bread, but Josh's ciabatta. Let me say right now, I am not a paid spoke person for Kirchoff's bakery. The simple truth is that I am addicted to this wonderful bread, which is rather amazing since until now I have considered bread to be an accessory to a meal. OK, more than an accessory where sandwiches are involved.

Patience is working today and I am alone in the house with Mama Pajama, Fat Charlie, Delia, Luciano, Sam I Am, Swede William, Lindy Loo, and the 4 poopies...I mean puppies. Or do I? She won't be home until somewhere around 8 PM so my mid-day meal will be solo, and I cannot wait!

The meal is simple elegance. Two slices of toasted ciabatta on a bed of arugula, drizzled with olive oil and fresh lemon juice and covered with grated parmesean cheese. On the side, mozarella and fresh tomatoes, and of course, a glass of your favorite wine. For lunch I prefer a cabernet or chianti.

And after lunch? It is studio time. The Cambridge painting is slowly taking shape, and I've returned to the small watercolor landscapes that I was painting during the last few months of 2009.

Moore's Place wc 7x10

Thursday, February 10, 2011


I don’t miss the sixties, because I missed them . Let me explain.

In 1961, which culturally was still the fifties, I entered medical school, and for the next four years my life was focused entirely, totally, and completely, on my studies. After graduation in 1965 I spent the next two years submerged in my duties, first as an intern and then as a medical resident. “Submerged in my duties” translates into 10- hour days plus night call every third night, including a six week ER rotation of 24 hours on and 24 off. In 1967 I was drafted into the US Navy and spent the next two years with the 2nd Marine Air Wing stationed at Cherry Point, NC, isolated in a small town on the Carolina coast. My life was now all medicine plus the Marines. In 1969 I resumed my medical training at the Delaware Hospital in Wilmington Delaware, and in 1971 opened my first medical practice with 2 colleagues, but still had the “boards” to prepare for (a two day test required for board certification in internal medicine). So the next 12 months was devoted to constant study, and when I wasn’t studying, I was either thinking or worrying about studying. It all ended in 1972...I passed the boards and vowed I would never, ever take another test again. When I emerged from eleven years of this very narrowly focused life I found the world had changed, and I had not been part of that change. I had some catching up to do.

While that was looking back, I am still looking ahead. Two work currently remain in progress:

This watercolor of Cambridge in UK...

and a new acrylic taking shape on this 48x34” canvas...

Tuesday, February 8, 2011


I would like to share more of my mom's art. I only have a few of the many paintings and drawings she completed; she gave most of them away to family and friends.

As for me...I have another commission in progress that I can share...a watercolor of a scene in Cambridge, UK



Monday, February 7, 2011


The single most important person in my life?...without a mother. I have tried repeatedly to write about her, and have only been able to do so peripherally, recalling events and place associated with her. But for some reason when it comes to directly writing about her and all that she was, words fail me.

For reasons beyond her control she had to leave her mother and stepfather and move to an apartment with her 3 older brothers when she was 13. She left school after the 6th grade and became the cook, and housekeeper for the 4 or them. She was a city girl, growing up in south Philadelphia, until she met and married my father, a farmer from southern New Jersey, at the age of 21. She immediately became the provider to her husband, her father-in-law (who at one point told her she was his daughter more than his daughters were), and the expanded Renzulli family, many of whom returned to the farm to live with us from time to time.

My mother could cook...oh how she could cook...could sew, bake, butcher the meat from our pigs, calves, and lambs. She could sit down at a piano, or with a mandolin, and pick pick out a tune, and she could draw and paint, in her own primitive and not so primitive way.

She was fearless...and would not hesitate to take on any project, and I see this same thing in my 3 daughters.

She was intuitive and had an incredible gift of understanding people, there needs and their foibles. And I could only wonder...what she could have done and accomplished if she had the opportunities that she and my father provided me.

After 71 years, it is rare that a day goes by when I don’t think about her.

This post? Inspired by my recently looking at some of her paintings that I had stored away.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011


At the risk of appearing to spend all of my time eating I am posting this second edition of the pleasures of the mid-day meal. Honest...I’m still painting, but the commission I’m working on is a surprise for someone so I can’t post anything about it. You will have to take my word on this. Now...back to that lunch.

Once again, the secret to this “should be illegal” pleasure is Josh’s ciabatta bread, toasted and drizzled with olive oil. Instead of asparagus, today it was covered with diced tomatoes treated with basil, oregano, red pepper flakes, and garlic and dusted with parmesan cheese.

An added treat is the salami from a market in NYC sent to me by a cousin there. To complete the lunch, a few slices of assiago cheese and a glass of wine.

Is there any wonder why I’m such a friggin Pollyanna? Life is too good to be otherwise.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011


The mid-day meal has become one of the highlights of my day, a time when I can enjoy rather simple food, without a lot of prep time and without the subtle let down that comes after diner as the day takes its toll on my energy and ambition.

This has become one of my very favorite lunches. Asparagus (nuked for 2 minutes in the microwave) on 1 or 2 slices of toasted ciabatta bread drizzled with olive oil and fresh lemon juice, and covered with grated Parmesan cheese. On the side, fresh mozzarella and prosciutto, and of course a small glass of red wine for one's daily health. For this to be truly a delightful experience the bread must be from Kirchoff's bakery...anything other than Josh's bread will be second best.