Vegetable medley

Gouache on hot-pressed Arches paper, 7×5” (larger)

To celebrate E-filing my taxes tonight I wanted to paint something bright, cheery (and low calorie to make up for all the chocolate I ate while preparing the return). For years I fueled my tax preparation with a big bag of Mother’s Iced Circus Cookies that I stuck in the freezer and munched on until my taxes were done. I needed all that sugar to be able to do the math, understand the forms, and reward myself for doing such an unpleasant task.

This year I skipped the toxic cookies (loaded with artificial color, flavor and hydrogenated fats but oh so yummy)…and bought organic, fair trade chocolate at my neighborhood health food store, El Cerrito Natural. I waited a week to let the tax returns “simmer on the back burner” to make sure I hadn’t forgotten anything. Then tonight I reviewed everything and clicked “Submit.”

It’s much easier to do taxes these days: Turbotax does the math and I just have to gather and enter all the information. But I still experience all the same old fear and loathing plus resentment at where my tax money goes. But it’s done for another year! Woohoo!

Gouache, Painting, Sketchbook Pages, Still Life
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Join the conversation! 10 Comments



  2. Your veggies look so great against that vibrant background…a perfect choice to celebrate a “task” well done!


  3. Now that’s the way to do taxes. I need more sweets on hand when I do that sort of work, I guess. It sucks the air out of me. Next time: buy chocolate. 🙂


  4. Wat a glorious painting, wow! So you obviously like the gouache, right? It surely shows. What kind do you use? Do you like the Schminke’s like Laura does? This one is so free and confident, and a wonderful composition. Grand job.

    ~Thanks Nel. I do really like gouache — it’s got many of the positive qualities of oil and watercolor. I’m just using a limited palette of Winsor & Newton that are all permanent colors. It’s fine. I was almost going to order the Schmincke–until I saw the price–and couldn’t really justify it since I already have the W&N. I think I should have stopped about half an hour sooner than I did, but I was still pretty happy with it.


  5. oh lovely Jana!!!! I love the iced animal cookies too!!!! and hate tax time…..*groan* still have our to do. I love the color scheme you have going here!

    The color scheme results from my going to the local quilting store and buying a selection of yummy colors of fabric to use in my still lifes.


  6. What a beautiful still-life. The shading seems perfect… and the coloring equisit. Great way to celebrate I must admit.


  7. I was so taken with that mustard field I forgot to say how much this made me laugh. I NEVER do tax stuff. That is what husbands/uncles/accountants are for!

    I wish! Even when I was married I did the taxes (and managed the money).


  8. That’s not brussel sprouts surely! Lots of people just hate them because they overcook them. Best a bit crunchy, even part of a stirfry. Nice compositon, colour and curvy lines on the beans!


  9. I’ve been thoroughly entertained by all your recent posts, Jana. I can relate to the tax chore – an accountant does ours but we still manage to hate getting all the bits of paper and information together. I had hoped it would all go away when I stopped working.

    Beautiful paintings here too – every one of them. The mustard field is stunning as are these veg and I’m fascinated with the exercises from your class. Thank you for sharing them. And thank you so much for your lovely comment on my blog.


  10. Iced Circus Cookies! Ah, that takes me back. Those were my favorite store bought cookies until I ate just one too many. Now I feel queasy when I see the package in the store. Funny to move from brussel sprouts to iced cookies. It’s a fun painting. Love the yellow. It’s very cheerful and energetic.

    Congrats on getting the taxes done!



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