Friday, May 18, 2018

Pink Ladies

 "Pink Ladies"
12 x 16 inches, oil on canvas

Pretty in pink - and white! There's some luscious thick paint on those apples. Click the image to zoom way in! 

Here's my sketch - sharpie, ballpoint pen, and white marker on tan paper. These really help me plan my composition and value structure.

Friday, May 11, 2018

Blue Vines

"Blue Vines"
12 x 16 inches, oil on canvas

Blue vines on the bowl, green vines in the bowl! Love this little Hoya plant. It has so much movement and liveliness about it, and almost grows before my eyes.

Monday, April 30, 2018

Lemons in Glass - And Videos!

"Lemons in Glass"
8 x 8 inches, oil on canvas

This was April's demonstration for my Online Art Mentorship group, talking about painting glass - a subject many of us love to visit and revisit - including me! It was a great session, and I've got the videos to prove it. 

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Lemon Water

 "Lemon Water"
10 x 10 inches, oil on canvas

I had a great week of daily painting. Six 10x10's and an 8x10. Phew! Thank you for joining me!

Here's the preparatory sketch for this one. It was actually done on tan paper, but I liked the look of it converted to black and white. Maybe I will get a gray sketchbook next!

Here's a collage of the week's paintings. These are all available - you can check them out on Etsy. 

Monday, April 23, 2018

Three In, Three Out

 "Three In, Three Out"
10 x 10 inches, oil on canvas

I loved noticing all those blues of the bowl reflecting onto the apples - and the green reflections in the plate! Lots of opportunities for chunky color spots. Satisfying!

Sunday, April 22, 2018


8 x 10 inches, oil on canvas

This was day five of my seven paintings in seven days. After two days of painting tulips, my thought was, "I'm going to keep it simple today." You can see how that worked out for me!

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Four Tulips

"Four Tulips"
10 x 10 inches, oil on canvas

I love the white bottoms of tulips. These were a particularly satisfying color to mix. I used a combination of Alizarin Crimson and Pyrrol Red. Luscious!

Friday, April 20, 2018

A Ribbon Runs Through

"A Ribbon Runs Through"
10 x 10 inches, oil on canvas

OH man, did I have fun with this one. 

Day two of my seven-day painting challenge. Follow them all week on Instagram!

Thanks for looking!

Thursday, April 19, 2018


10 x 10 inches, oil on canvas

 I am doing a painting a day this week with my Online Art Mentorship group - and anyone else who wants to participate - over on Instagram. Just seven days, not the more typical 30-day challenge, with a goal of creating some spring studio momentum! 

I love the way I feel when I paint every day. There's a time for being ambitious about painting - working larger, more carefully - and for being more precious about the outcome. It can be a relief to step away from that, and say 'Tomorrow is a new day....and a new painting!' 

What will you create today?

Saturday, March 31, 2018

Green Shadow

green shadow, 8x10 inches, oil on canvas by sarah sedwick
 "Green Shadow"
8 x 10 inches, oil on canvas

I painted this alongside a lovely group of workshop students last weekend, walking them through the steps of planning a successful still life. Thumbnail sketch, Notan, 5-value study, underpainting, color! 

These steps are great tools  - I don't do them all, for every one of my paintings, of course. You loyal readers have seen many black and white studies from me, but over time, the other steps have become mental - I look through a viewfinder and try out different compositions in my head instead of doing thumbnail sketches. I think about the Notan, the overall light/dark effect I'm creating. Then I launch right into the value study.

The step I'm leaving out is really preliminary - setting up the still life! Always fun, always challenging. And that's the part that my students don't have to worry about when they're in a workshop with me! I take care of that. ;)

Friday, March 23, 2018


papaya painting art still life sarah sedwick
10 x 10 inches, oil on canvas

My first-ever papaya painting! It was so worth it to spend the $5 on this beauty, to get to delve into all those peachy oranges. I love the subtle contrast with the pink of the napkin.  

Here's my palette for this one: split-primary with bonus yellow ochre. 
You can click on the image to see it bigger, and read the color names on the tubes.

Sketch to finish - I ended up going for more papaya and less knife: 

 Thanks for reading!

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Room For Two

 "Room For Two"
8 x 8 inches, oil on canvas

Lots of teaching lately! I started this one yesterday with a private student, and finished it up this afternoon. This bowl makes me pretty happy.  That dark rim is so satisfying to paint. 

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Lemon Geometry

 "Lemon Geometry"
8 x 8 inches, oil on canvas

I spend a lot of time on still life setup - and as you see below, that enables me to really rely on perception as I'm painting. I like to call it "slavishly copying the world," with tongue firmly in cheek.

If you're interested in learning more about my techniques for still life setup - or just want to paint one of them - I've got two workshops coming up! One is March 24-25th, in Eugene, and the other is April 6-8, on Bainbridge Island, WA. There are a couple of spaces open in both - join me! :)

Saturday, March 10, 2018

Opening to the Light

"Opening to the Light" 10 x 10 inches, oil on canvas by Sarah Sedwick
"Opening to the Light"
10 x 10 inches, oil on canvas

When I walked into the studio yesterday morning, I was immediately captivated by these daffodils - the way the blooms move from almost closed to completely open. I knew that was not going to last long once I turned the spotlight on them! So I painted the flowers first, and by the time I'd finished the rest of the painting, quite a bit later in the day, they were all wide open.

Friday, March 9, 2018


"Thirsty" 8 x 10 inches, oil painting on canvas by Sarah Sedwick
8 x 10 inches, oil on canvas

These flowers were only thirsty for a little while - I popped them into the glass once I finished this painting, and we all breathed a sigh of relief.

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Color Swoon

"Color Swoon"
10 x 10 inches, oil on canvas

My eyes pretty much want to live inside the color of this ribbon all the time. It's like the feeling of exhaling a deep breath - your body relaxes. 

That's how my eyes feel when they're full of this color.

Monday, March 5, 2018

A New Painting of Some Oranges...With Videos!

"One Turned Away"
8 x 8 inches, oil on canvas

This was the painting demonstration for my online art mentorship students at our monthly group session in Februray. It's a fun little piece! I love composing with cast shadows, and this is an excellent example of why. 

I just published a full-length video of this demo on YouTube - walking through my 3-step process for alla prima painting. Here's a clip!

(If you're reading this in your email - thanks for being a subscriber! You may need to click this link to watch, though. ;))

Friday, March 2, 2018


"Hope" floral daffodil tarot art oil painting still life by sarah sedwick 9x12 inches
9 x 12 inches, oil on canvas

I thought I would counter yesterday's sorrow with some of the antidote. A quietly sunny spring painting. 
The Tarot card in this piece is also a hopeful one - the Ten of Cups, symbolizing emotional fulfillment. Not sure how it works when it's sideways - I'll leave that to the experts! :)

Thursday, March 1, 2018


"Sorrow (Three of Swords)" 14x18 oil on canvas by Sarah Sedwick
 "Sorrow (Three of Swords)" 
14 x 18 inches, oil on canvas

I'm loving learning about Tarot by researching each card as I use them in my paintings. This one, the Three of Swords, when it's in the upright position, is kind of a bummer - but not entirely without sunshine. Yes, the card represents a painful episode in life, but pain can be seen as an opportunity to grow stronger, to change the direction of your life. While the pain may cloud your vision for a certain period, it will eventually allow you to see clearly and to put the past behind you. 

If you let them, the Swords cards can rid you of your denial and teach you valuable lessons.

...And if you paint them, they can teach you valuable lessons about color mixing and edges!
tarot card three of swords oil painting by sarah sedwick

As always with a piece this large, I began with a black and white study. This one has already gone to a collector who saw it on Instagram, but you can see a lot more of these oil studies in my Etsy shop.

Black and white studies really help me plan my paintings - specifically, the way my big value shapes will affect the composition. What shape and gesture do the darkest darks make on the canvas? How dark are my cast shadows, really? And where is my area of strongest contrast? I keep the study close to me while I'm painting the color version, to remind myself of my intentions.

Friday, February 16, 2018

Abundance (Nine of Cups)

still life oil painting tarot card art
 "Abundance (Nine of Cups)"
12 x 12 inches, oil on canvas

From my favorite Tarot website: "It is no wonder that many Tarot readers refer to this card as the Wish Card, as its appearance is often taken as a sign that, whatever your heart’s desire, it shall be granted in the coming days or weeks. Know that you have paved your own way on the path to success."

Here is my value study for this piece. 
It's all part of that way-paving, on the path to success, at least in this painting!

"Abundance (BW Study)"
9 x 9 inches, oil on Arches oil paper
$100 (unframed)