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Lilies for Mom

 Calla Lilies
oil on board
65 x 130 cm

I visited my family in August and was asked by my mother to paint her Calla Lilies. It has been over 20 years since I used oil as a medium so I set out to do a  rather large painting, almost as tall as me. It did take me a while and I also forgot how long it takes for oil to dry. It was a lot of fun to do, and the best thing is my mother is pleased with the results. It now hangs in the living room of her home. Unfortunately, the photo is dark and does not highlight the details well. I worked much on layering colors and used textures to create form.

I also had fun looking back on some of my older art work, especially my old sketchbooks and drawings. There is some of me in every corner, I won't bore you with everything! My mom is definitely responsible for my love of art. She not only named me after her high school art teacher, she was a high school art teacher for a few years and a wonderful artist. She provides infinite encouragement and guidance in my artistic journey. She kept my old oil brushes which I used for the oil painting I painted for her.

pages from my first sketchbook from high school. Princess Diana, Molly Ringwald,and Daryl Hall (from Hall and Oates) . I have always loved portrait drawing and spent many hours copying faces from magazines.
These were rather large sketches (almost 5 feet in height) from a portrait drawing class I took in college, it is fun to see some improvement. The bottom two are self-portraits.
My mother painted this wall in her favorite color, she likes the way it highlight the colors in the paintings. The two left paintings are some examples of my first attempts in watercolor 20 years ago! The lemons on the right I painted in 2012.


  1. How fantastic to have all these earlier works to look at Celia. I have never painted in anything other than watercolour but I can appreciate you have skill in several mediums

  2. Merci pour ces beau peinture.Tou les oeuvres me touche beaucoup.

  3. I love the brushstrokes in the background of your cheerful calla lilies. I can see your mom is real proud of you, with good reason. :)

  4. So nice that your Mother enjoys your painting. They are wonderful!

  5. What a treat to see your older sketches...fantastic work!!! and your calla lilies are beautifully painted...It looks wonderful in a frame!!!

  6. Wow what a great post ! Your oil painting is fabulous and really shows off in the golden frame , great work ! Also your sketches are super, princess Diana is spot on , really good ! There is even a portrait that looks like me ....I really had to look twice :-)))

  7. I love your oil painting Celia! I love the bold blue background and the calla lilies as well! Your sketches are excellent - Thank you for sharing your work!

  8. Congrats to you working in another medium! And oils, so different than watercolor, done so well. Love the textures you accomplished. I'm sure your mother cherishes it.

  9. Gorgeous painting! Interesting that you work also in oil!

  10. Aw, that's so sweet that your mom knew you were an artist, and encouraged you to develop those skills. You've honored her in this post, the same way that she honors your work in her home. I love the sketchbook pieces, especially the ballet shoes. Did you dance?

  11. Love your colour-full calla lilies - they jump right out from the background. And kudos to your mom for encouraging such talent!

  12. One of my favorites of my many favorite of your posts! Celia! I so love this very beautiful flower! Besides being a rocking off the charts fantastic watercolorist you a very talented oil painter! Hope to see more oils! And more watercolors too! I so love your sketches from your past! Wonderful! A fantastic collection and happy journey down memory lane! Your mother being an artist is so very fitting. I love the fact that she was a teacher and such a wonderful influence on you! So nice of you to do this painting for her! You are one of the best of the best! Creme de la creme! You and your Mom are so very fortunate to have each other! Yippee! Oh, Have The Happiest Halloween Ever! My favorite holiday! Boo!

  13. Thank you all!!! I love reading your comments and am flattered by each one! I wish you all a wonderful weekend!!

  14. How fun to see some of your early works! The calla lilies came out great! I love the rich colors!!

    1. Thanks Joan, I'm happy you like the painting and seeing my earlier works. It is fun to look back...after all this time.

  15. What a great post. I have a soft spot for mothers who are proud of their children's talents. The calla lily painting is very striking and I love the richness you achieved. Your early watercolors are really fabulous. It is obvious that you always had the talent.

    1. Thank you Julie, I had fun playing in oils, I wish I could practice more! I am so happy you enjoyed the post!

  16. How wonderful to have a special request from your mum and to be able to deliver something so lovely for her! I so enjoyed seeing your older work - it is fantastic! I too used to draw famous faces as a teen - I must unearth them one of these days. You have fantastic drawing skills Celia and I hope to see more drawings from you as well as your lovely watercolours - and oils! You did well revisiting your old medium after so long.

    1. It was funny to look back at my old sketchbooks, I had forgotten about them. Moms save everything! I would love to see your older work too,have a wonderful day Wendy!

  17. Bonjour chère Célia,

    J'aime beaucoup cette publication généreuse artistiquement et sentimentalement...
    Je trouve cette huile avec ce trio de calla lilies sublime... J'aime le contraste avec le fond.
    Je travaille lentement et l'huile me convient bien... Je comprends que la lenteur de séchage doit quelque peu chambouler lorsqu'on a l'habitude de travailler à l'eau.
    Je suis très admirative devant vos anciens croquis... Ils sont tous beaux et ont une âme... A bien conserver !
    Vous avez beaucoup de chance d'avoir eu une maman qui vous ait soutenue et continue à le faire. Je n'ai pas eu ce même destin avec la mienne.
    Je vois qu'elle a pris soin de peindre un mur pour mettre en valeur votre art.

    Merci pour ce joli partage... continuez à nous séduire.

    Gros bisous ☂

    1. Thank you for you kind comment Martine! I'm sorry to hear your mom didn't encourage your art, it is hard to believe when you have such an incredible talent!

  18. Hi Celia. The callas are so lovely, majestic and elegant. Your mum must be delighted with them. Really interesting to see how your style has evolved over the years. So thanks for showing us. You are a very talented lady. Take care.

    1. Thank you Laura! She is very happy with the painting. I realize what a journey art is, it was helpful to look back on my older work after all this time.


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