Saturday, May 28, 2022

In the News!

 My solo wildlife show on Martha's Vineyard at the Louisa Gould Gallery has a write up in the Martha's Vineyard Times. See link below.

 Wild Things on Exhibit at the Louisa Gould Gallery

There are a few errors as the wonderful writer got some of the stories mixed up.
My husband and I were dropped off by a float plane in Manitoba, not a helicopter
My canoe trip on the Noatak River was not with my husband but with 5 others
While I did see a cow moose and her calf in my yard, the painting in the show is of a bull & cow moose which I saw at Turnbull Wildlife Refuge outside Spokane. 

Wednesday, May 11, 2022


 For my 900th painting, this subject and its title seemed to fit.

Joy Ride    17" X 24"    Original Oil painting by Linda Besse

Once the painting was dry to the touch, I was free to glaze the lower part of the sail. For this I used Liquin and Michael Harding Crimson Lake and Rembrandt Cadmium Orange.

Coincidently, this is also my 900th blog post!


Saturday, May 7, 2022

More water

 Above is the painting before the white sparkles and the boat's wake are added.

Friday, April 29, 2022



People, well sort of.

To aid in the "I'm in the boat with them" action, their heads are covered by the sail. 
Lest you think I also cut off their legs, their legs are in the foot-well of the sunfish.

Thursday, April 21, 2022


What is the significance of 900?

In this case it is my 900th painting! Yes, I have been keeping track.

  Once again I am changing the order of what I paint. Usually I would paint all the water and then get to the bold colors of the sail. In this case, I wanted to paint the sail near the beginning of the painting because I will be glazing the lower yellow section when it is dry. The glazing color over the yellow will yield a more brilliant color than I could achieve by mixing from the tube for my normal wet-on-wet application. 
   You can see from the above photo how I am building up the water.

   I've blended the different water colors but still left open spaces for the "white" sparkles which will be added later. Once the painting is almost complete, I'll have an idea of how much of the sparkles should be added to enhance the movement of the water.


Monday, April 4, 2022

Steamboat Springs, CO * Clarksville, TN * Annapolis, MD

 What do these places have in common? My work will be in a show there.


Oil Painters of America 31st Annual National Exhibition of Traditional Oils                                   Steamboat Art Museum, Steamboat Springs, Colorado                                                                                June 3 - August 27

In the show is Stealth - Amur Tiger                                                                                                            Original oil painting by Linda Besse   24" X 34" 


Society of Animal Artists Presenting the Animals of North America                                                          Customs House Museum & Cultural Center,  Clarksville, Tennessee                                                         May 3 - June 26, 2022  

In the show is Sandhill Spring Migration                                                                                              Original oil painting by Linda Besse     16" X 24"


International Guild of Realism 16th Annual Exhibition                                                                               McBride Gallery, Annapolis, Maryland                                                                                                       June 10 - July 24

In the show is Spooked                                                                                                                                 Original oil by Linda Besse    24" X 36"                                                                                                                           


Saturday, March 26, 2022

Arctic Fire

 The first spring flowers are just starting to bloom but it is still dipping below freezing at night here. While waiting for the full onset on Spring, I thought I would share my very wintry painting from earlier this year.

The aurora borealis has different looks with the types listed as dunes, arcs, bands, pillars, diffuse, and corona. I don't know which type my favorite falls in to but I call it curtains. The undulating spectacle reminds me of the heavy curtains on a stage moving gently as the players behind take their places before the show starts.When I can create a painting which also includes a predator with which I have spent a lot of time with in the wild, I have a recipe for a dramatic painting.

Starting with the sky, I block in the colors painting some very bright yellow as a focus point for the northern lights.

In keeping with the night scene, the ice has a dull teal hue with pockets of purer color in the foreground.

The water has some muted shadows and I painted it so it would feel fairly smooth with no hint of a breeze.

I have been fortunate to have spent time in remote Manitoba observing polar bears. There are few things more heart pounding that to be in the tundra and finding a polar bear has been watching you and you didn't know he was there.


Arctic Fire    16" X 24"   Original oil

The above image of the scanned painting looks quite a bit different than the in-progress photos. Once the piece was dry, I glazed many sections with mostly Michael Harding Phthalocyanine Blue Lake.

Monday, January 17, 2022

Warrior King


Warrior King   Original Oil   24" X 16"

Here is a scan of the completed painting. Once varnished, the dark texture will no longer have the "ghost" of reflected light.

I've decided to go with a gloss varnish. This is a change for me as I like a semi-gloss or a satin. It seemed the traditional nature of the dramatic lighting called for gloss.

I asked my framer to paint the frame to match my mottled background and touch the inside lip of the frame with a hint of the golden color of the mane. The frame started as a matte black. She is amazing. Holly Swanson, owner of Spokane Gallery & Framing. 

Below is a quick photo of the finished frame. We went with a more satin look for the frame so not to distract from the painting.

This may seem like a quick painting but I have sped it up for you in the blog.

Thank you for joining me as I explored the use of chiaroscuro.   


Friday, January 14, 2022

Almost There



At this stage the structures of his head have been painted but none of the lighter sections nor the colors of his mane in the sunlight.

Note: Quick photo with my phone

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

More lion

 For his mane below his chin I'm keeping it loose with some vibrant colors mixed in. Some of this will be toned down near the end but I wanted to start with some splashes of reds and golds.

The first thing I did after painting the mottled background was paint his eyes. A painting can fall flat if the eyes don't grab one's attention. Though they were painted at the beginning, that does not mean I am done with them. Throughout the painting I am making changes to get just the right feeling from them. Below is a photo of them at this stage of the painting.


Now that the other ear is painted, the painting feels less lopsided to me. I wanted to work on the shadowed side first and use the information I gathered from that side to "inform" how I wanted to approach the lit side.

Note: these are quick photos from my phone

Monday, January 10, 2022


Chiaroscuro has fascinated me. The use of extreme light and dark, perfected by Rembrandt, has been a tool of artists for centuries. For this lion, which obviously had been the victor in numerous battles, I thought this technique would reflect the honor he had won. 

I began with a mottled background of dark browns and burnt sienna. This dark background will help emphasize the light parts of the lion's mane.


Next I started on his mane. I went kind of wild with the red but I thought it would add to the drama.


I am not concerned with portraying the individual hairs of his fur but am using broad strokes in the direction of his fur. This shadowed section will have the least amount of detail.

On the rim of the lion's shoulder I have added some blue. This is the same blue color around his eyes and mouth.

Note: These are quick photos with my phone.

Monday, January 3, 2022

Ice Bear awarded 3rd place

 My painting Ice Bear has been awarded 3rd place in the Challenges of Climate Change presented by Science Art-Nature. The awards were announced December 2021.

While art is an important focus of the Challenges of Climate Change, so is the science. To see more about Ice Bear in this context, click here.

For more about the non-profit Science Art - Nature, click here.


From the Science Art - Nature website:

Works of Science Art skillfully represent truths about the world and its creatures, often suggesting important connections among subjects and their surroundings and teaching us indirectly about nature itself.

To qualify as Science Art and to work well, the rendering is accompanied by an explanatory caption that helps the viewer decode the underlying science.

We have been asked: “Why Science Art?” The term neither describes the science of artistic creation nor the depiction of scientific events.

Instead, we see in Science Art a kind of cultural fusion in which painting or sculpture or photography say something about the natural world and how it works. Whether or not it is motivated by a scientific purpose, a work of Science Art can enrich the viewer with a sense that its subject is connected with, and could help explain, relationships.

The artist sometimes uses scientific knowledge and findings; sometimes these emerge only because the artist’s execution is sensitive and faithful to these relationships.

We have also been asked: “Why not ‘Environmental Art’ or ‘Wildlife Art’ or ‘Nature Art’?” Works of art that represent truths about the natural world and its creatures certainly include these categories, although not all examples of Environmental Art, Wildlife Art, and Nature Art convey truths. Here, too, it is the explanatory caption that provides the viewer with access to truths that might otherwise be overlooked.