A delightful little chihuahua mixed. The little smile is a killer.

Dabs, watercolor on 10 x 8 artboard by Marlene Lee
Dabs, graphite on 12 x 9 inches paper by Marlene Lee

I often find the doing a pencil drawing first helps me to get into the “mood”.


Turk, oil on canvas panel, 9 x 12 inches by Marlene Lee

This is Turk. He is a dachshund and just loves the water.

Interested in a portrait of your pet? Commissions can be requested in my Etsy shop, Paintings by Marlene. I can do portraits in either watercolor or oils. I usually take about a month to finish up an oil portrait. Maybe two weeks for watercolor.


Calvin, 10 x 8 inches on watercolor art board
First stage, the first layer of paint

When I start on a pet portrait in watercolor, I like to begin with a complete pencil drawing. This helps me to see more of the cat’s features and to understand the planes of its face and more importantly the values shifts across the head. Once completed I may use the drawing as a basis for the watercolor. I would xerox and enlarged to fit into the 8 x 10 format for a watercolor pet portrait. And then pencil trace the image onto the watercolor art board. From there it’s all about color.

Interested in a watercolor portrait of your pet. Click here to visit my Etsy shop for samples.

Urbansketching at the Manetti Shrem Museum

Let’s Draw Davis sketchcrawl group met in front of the Manetti Shrem Museum located on the University of California, Davis campus. Students are back and many had shown up to sketch. I was able to captured a young sketcher while chitchatting with another sketcher. While sitting at the entrance way of the museum, I sketched this metal sculpture and the receptionist inside. Later, the receptionist was curious of what I was doing so I showed her the sketch and she loved it enough to take a photo of it.

Moleskine Watercolor Sketchbook

Along my walks

There are so many areas where I take my walks. Some of the areas are through the Davis Cemetery, along the bike path near Nuggets Soccer Fields and along the University of Davis, California. The season is changing and so many places to put to paint.

At the Pine Trails Horse Ranch

Pine Trails Horse Ranch was one of the Yolo Arts&Ag farm or ranch visits. I tried to capture the many aspects of this horse ranch.

the Artery

I’m proud to announce that I had been accepted into the Artery. The Artery is an artists cooperative and was founded in 1974. They exhibit high quality arts and crafts and represent over 50 artists throughout the Sacramento Valley.

The art that I will be displaying there will be still life paintings.

Two Small plein aire paintings

These two paintings were done outside of Davis. Our painting group decided to head out to Dixon along a country road that turned out to be busy with cars and trucks zooming past us. It’s a faraway scene across fields and mountains in the background. And the sky reflects the fires further north in California.

Off on Milk Farm Road Dixon, 6 x 8 inches oil on panel by Marlene Lee

Next time we met we went outside the University of Davis perimeter to Hutchinson Road. There were these vineyards and also a private planes taking off and joggers. Again a busy road.

Vineyard off on Hutchinson Road, 6 x 8 inches, oil on cotton panel by Marlene Lee

Note: I had sized down the images to approximately the originals.

If interested in buying one of the paintings, email me at marleneleeart@gmail.com.