Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Mid-Winter Improv

"Mid-Winter Improv", acrylic on linen 12" x 12", © Nancy Roberts
Started from life, finished in fantasy. I needed a little mid-winter cheer! My model was a beautiful tree at Heather Farm in Walnut Creek, California.

Friday, December 21, 2018

Rose Hill Journey

"Rose Hill Journey", acrylic on canvas 12" x 12", © Nancy Roberts
Rose Hill is a historic cemetery tucked into the hills of Black Diamond Mines, once the site of thriving coal mines and now a beautiful regional preserve in Northern California.  Crumbling headstones dot the terrain and ancient Cypress trees  connect earth and sky.

Monday, December 3, 2018

Some Enchanted Evening

"Some Enchanted Evening", acrylic on linen 12" x 12", © Nancy Roberts
I started this at a real farm in Brentwood, but as I worked it morphed into a moonlit labyrinth. I love combining plein air with fantasy!

Sunday, November 25, 2018

October Garden

"October Garden", acrylic on linen 16" x 12", © Nancy Roberts
Fall color in the Ruth Bancroft Garden means hot pink, turquoise blue, and every shade of green you can imagine. An artist's delight!

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Deer Valley October

"Deer Valley October", acrylic on linen 12" x 16", © Nancy Roberts
Mt. Diablo and its foothills cradle an expanse of rugged ranch lands in far East Contra Costa County. Started this while painting with friends on Deer Valley Road in Antioch a few weeks ago, finished in my studio today. The warm October colors are cheering my heart on this cold, rainy day (although the rain is most welcome.)

Monday, November 5, 2018

Blake Garden Overlook

"Blake Garden Overlook", Acrylic on Canvas 16" x 12", © Nancy Roberts
Blake Garden has spectacular bay views.  It was a joy painting with friends in this peaceful garden on a crisp, glittering Bay Area day.

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Tiny Garden

"Tiny Garden", Acrylic on Gessobord, 4" x 4", © Nancy Roberts
This cute little painting will be part of a special collection of "minis" available for the holiday season at Valley Art Gallery in Walnut Creek.  Showcasing a colorful wall full of 4" x 4" paintings created and donated by the gallery's artists, the exhibit is a fundraiser to help purchase art supplies for local schools. The minimum donation to buy a mini is $20, but higher donations are encouraged to support this charitable cause.  You may have to arm-wrestle another collector to score minis by your favorite artists!

The mini exhibit kicks off with a Holiday Open House on Saturday, November 17, 11 am to 5 pm as part of Valley Art Gallery's 53rd Annual Holiday Collection for Artful Giving. Learn more at Valley Art Gallery

Thursday, October 4, 2018

Happy Kids!

Central Blvd. and Griffith Lane, Brentwood CA

"Happy Kids!" utility box mural, © Nancy Roberts

More Happy Kids!

Finished my utility box mural!  It's at the corner of Central Blvd. and Griffith Lane in Brentwood, California.  I received lots of nice comments from residents driving, walking and cycling by as I worked.  One friendly guy called out from his car "That's me! The blue one!"

Many thanks to the Brentwood Arts Commission and the City of Brentwood for organizing the awesome Utility Box Mural program.  Fun project!

Monday, August 27, 2018


"Valero", acrylic on canvas 12" x 12", © Nancy Roberts
Painted this during the 3rd Annual Benicia Plein Air Paint-Out. While most of the artists chose to paint along Benicia's scenic shoreline, I travelled to the outskirts of town where the oil refinery's tanks, smokestacks and pipes create an eerie, sci-fi landscape. In a fit of whimsy I decided to give these massive spherical tanks tall, spindly legs, and one of them can be seen escaping into the sky in the distance. 

And here's a very nice follow-up!  "Valero" received the First Place Award for August, 2018 in the Daily Paintworks monthly competition!

Monday, August 20, 2018

Golden Gate

"Golden Gate", acrylic on canvas 12" x 12", © Nancy Roberts
Started this at Fort Baker painting with fellow artist Judith Kunzle.  Buffeted by gale-force winds, it was all we could do to keep our easels from tumbling into the bay. I confess to adding the lines of those thin, straight cables in the shelter of my cozy studio!

Update:  This painting is now available at the Benicia Plein Air Gallery in Benicia, California.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Orchard Country, Brentwood

"Orchard Country, Brentwood", acrylic on canvas 12" x 24", © Nancy Roberts
Mt. Diablo frames a peaceful day in Brentwood's beautiful orchard country.  This painting is part of the Suburban Sketchers Plein Air exhibit at Delta Gallery in Brentwood, CA through September 29. Learn more at Delta Gallery.

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Smoky Day, North Slopes

"Smoky Day, North Slopes", acrylic on linen 12" x 12", © Nancy Roberts

Smoke from nearby wildfires draped Mt. Diablo in an eerie haze on this hot August day. Terrain and chaparral blended together in a mysterious, velveteen patchwork.

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Blake Garden Bolero

"Blake Garden Bolero", acrylic on linen 16" x 12", © Nancy Roberts
Painted with friends a few days ago at the lovely Blake Garden in Kensington, California. Joy!

Sunday, July 29, 2018

Diablo North Slopes, Clayton

"Diablo North Slopes, Clayton", acrylic on linen 12" x 16", © Nancy Roberts

Painted at a trailhead in Clayton, California, with dramatic views up the northern slopes of Mt. Diablo.

Sunday, July 15, 2018


"Edna", acrylic on linen 12" x 12", © Nancy Roberts
Painted this sketch of the lovely model Edna at an open studio figure day hosted by Carolyn Lord at Las Positas College in Livermore.  This was a fantastic opportunity to work from professional models in a studio lit only by soft, natural skylight. What a pleasure!

Monday, July 9, 2018

Black Diamond Jitterbug

"Black Diamond Jitterbug", acrylic on canvas 12" x 12", © Nancy Roberts
I created this painting working from a sketch I did last Winter at Black Diamond Mines. In my imagination the trees are dancing up the hill atop mysterious, colorful undercurrents.

Sunday, July 8, 2018

Ridge Top Vista

"Ridge Top Vista", acrylic on linen 16" x 12", © Nancy Roberts

Painted with friends on the 4th of July. Hot, windy, difficult conditions -- but what a spectacular view! Mt. Diablo in all its glory.

Friday, July 6, 2018

Byer Road, Byron

"Byer Road Ranch", acrylic on canvas 24" x 12", © Nancy Roberts

I love the strong, sculptural forms of this old farm equipment in the small, agricultural town of Byron, California. It was fun interpreting the scene in hot Summer colors!

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Diablo from Round Top

"Diablo from Round Top", acrylic on linen 16" x 12",  Nancy Roberts
I draw endless inspiration from Mt. Diablo in Northern California. Painted this view toward the summit from the Round Top area this week, alongside fellow painter Judith Kunzle. A beautiful day!

Monday, June 18, 2018

Lake Del Valle

"Lake Del Valle", acrylic on canvas 12" x 16", © Nancy Roberts
Lake Del Valle is the centerpiece of Del Valle Regional Park, a beautiful nature preserve tucked into the East Bay hills just south of Livermore. It was a joy to paint there on a sparkling -- and very windy! -- early June day.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Amador Flower Farm

"Amador Flower Farm", acrylic on linen 12" x 12", © Nancy Roberts
Painted at the beautiful Amador Flower Farm in Northern California. Abundant rows of colorful day lilies are set among heritage oaks in this gorgeous gold country setting.

Pageo Lavender Farm

"Pageo Lavender Farm", acrylic on linen 12" x 12", © Nancy Roberts
It was a joy to paint at the colorful -- and fragrant! -- Pageo Lavender Farm in Turlock, California.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Mission Trails

"Mission Trails", acrylic on linen 16" x 12", © Nancy Roberts
Mission Trails Regional Park is a wild and rugged nature preserve on the outskirts of San Diego, California. It was a joy painting in this serene desert environment.

Monday, May 14, 2018

China Camp

"China Camp", Acrylic on Linen 12" x 12", © Nancy Roberts
China Camp is a beautiful state park nestled along the shoreline of San Francisco Bay, just north of the Golden Gate Bridge. It was a joy to paint with friends at this peaceful cove on a sparkling Bay Area day.

Thursday, April 19, 2018


"Silos", acrylic on linen 16" x 12", © Nancy Roberts
Massive concrete silos stand guard over Benicia's bustling port scene. On the day I was there two huge cargo ships were unloading a flock of shiny new cars. This painting will be part of the "Paint the Town" exhibit featured at Benicia City Hall through mid-July.

Bridge Vista

"Bridge Vista", acrylic on linen 12" x 16", © Nancy Roberts
I love the complex structures that weave through the Benicia Bridge, spanning the Carquinez Strait in the San Francisco Bay Area. This painting will be part of the "Paint the Town" exhibit opening April 24 at Benicia City Hall and running through mid-July.

Monday, April 16, 2018


"Orbs", acrylic on canvas 12" x 12", © Nancy Roberts
These huge, spherical tanks are part of the Valero oil refinery complex in Benicia, California. I was struck by their strange, sculptural beauty and the eerie, sci-fi quality of the setting.

This painting will be part of the "Paint the Town" exhibit that will be featured at Benicia City Hall April 24 through mid-July.

Sunday, March 25, 2018

California Art Club Exhibit

"Desert Tapestry", acrylic on canvas 16" x 12", © Nancy Roberts
I'm honored that my painting "Desert Tapestry" has been accepted into the California Art Club's "Art Between the Lines" exhibition coming up at the Peninsula Museum of Art in Burlingame, CA. Exhibit dates are April 29 - July 8 with an artists' reception on Sunday, April 29, 2 - 4 pm. Learn more at http://www.peninsulamuseum.org/

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Joyful Color

You are cordially invited!  The reception for my solo show is tomorrow, Friday, January 19, 5 - 7 pm at the Milinda Perry Gallery, 117 East F Street in Benicia, CA. The exhibit features 43 of my recent acrylic paintings. I'd love to see you there!

Friday, January 5, 2018

Acrylic Demo January 8 in Pleasanton

You're invited!
I'll be giving an acrylic painting demonstration this Monday, January 8, 7:30 - 9:15 pm at the Pleasanton Art League and Livermore Art Association's monthly meeting. We'll be at the Pleasanton Cultural Arts Building, 4477 Black Ave., Pleasanton CA 94566. The demo is free and open to the public -- I'd love to see you there! For more info visit http://www.pal-art.com/