"Swan Creek at Dawn" oil - 16 x 20 SOLD

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Lucy and Sally

Lucy and Sally  oil - 16 x 20

I haven't posted lately, not only because Christmas preparations are in full swing, but because I have been working on this painting of two adorable puppies. The painting will be revealed at our annual Christmas Eve party where the owners of Lucy and Sally will be surprised by their kid's thoughtful Christmas gift. I am so excited that I will be there when the kids either show their parents the painting, or wait until they recognize their dogs hanging on the wall. Either way will make for a fun time for all.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Winter Playground

Winter Playground  oil - 24 x 18

This is my entry in the Celebrate Frederick Holiday Poster Competition this year. The winner was announced last night at the Delaplaine Arts Center's opening reception. Although I did not win, I thought the winning painting was very good. I have a cool idea to paint for next year so I'll try again. By doing a holiday painting each year (four years in a row now), it has become a holiday tradition for me. This year I played Christmas music while I painted Winter Playground, to put me in the Christmas mood.  

When it snows ain't it thrillin'
Though your nose gets a chillin'
We'll frolic and play the Eskimo way
Walking in a winter wonderland.........

Monday, November 14, 2011

Happily Planted

Happily Planted  oil - 10 x 8

In probably her most favorite seat in the world, is my Aunt Judy. Here she is sitting in a beach chair, on the beach, in Nags Head, NC where life is good. Her birthday was on Saturday and I wanted to paint something for her and I needed to paint something for the "Fall Challenge". So, to kill two birds with one stone, I painted this today. The challenge was to use a limited pallet of two reds, two blues and two yellows along with white. I have been wanting to try a more illustrated look, by outlining a figure in a dark value and keeping the brush strokes loose. I just love how this turned out! I hope she likes it too.

Friday, November 11, 2011


Taylor  oil - 6 x 6

This is another mini-portrait of a rider and her horse that once dry and framed, will be ready to give as a Christmas present. This is Danielle's sister Taylor. The photograph was beautiful and would have made a gorgeous large portrait. Taylor was wearing a sleeveless dress but I painted her in a riding jacket. This way her portrait will be similar to her sister's.

I think they look great in these dark cherry frames hanging side by side. 

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


Danielle  oil -  6 x 6 

A friend of mine asked me to paint two small paintings, of two of her granddaughters with their horses, in time for her to give them as a Christmas gift. This is the first of the set. This photo is so beautiful that this would be beautiful painted much larger. It is rather difficult to get much detail in such a small painting especially when Danielle's face is about the size of a quarter on this 6x6 canvas. These little paintings will make lovely gifts. If you know this family don't tell them that a painting of them is posted on my blog.  It will be a surprise this Christmas. 

Friday, October 14, 2011


Becky - oil  6 x 6

This is one of the gals from BYC, wearing a derby on the day of the Kentucky Derby. It's taken a while to finish this because I just haven't been satisfied with it. Also, I have been busy with vacations, art shows and mowing (as a result of record breaking rain falls) therefore posting weekly on my blog was put on hold. Now, I am back!  I will be posting my progress on some of the larger paintings I will be working on, for wedding gifts, The Frederick Holiday Poster Competition, and commissioned paintings for Christmas presents.  This month some of my paintings were sold at a wonderful art show called Art at the Mill, in Virginia. The Mill will be having another show in the spring that I would like enter with new paintings. In addition to all these commitments, I said I would post a new painting every week, but now I am way behind.  I counted about 40 daily paintings I have done so far. That makes 16 more paintings I'll need to do before years end. Wow!

Thursday, September 1, 2011


Gidget  oil - 8 x 8

A German Shorthaired Pointer who wants to play ball. Is there any other kind? I got together with some friends to paint, but I forgot to bring any reference materials to paint from, so I borrowed this photo from my friend Emily of her dog Gidget. Emily said she would trade this painting for one she will paint of my dog Tug. I'll bet I am getting the better end of this deal.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Princess Erin

Princess Erin  oil - 6 x 6

This is Baltimore Yacht Club's princess Erin, returning to BYC, on the bow of her commodore's boat,  after the Queen of the Chesapeake Pageant. I loved the way the light falls on her and the view of her from behind gazing over the piers.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


Jeff  oil - 6 x 6

Jeff is an officer at Baltimore Yacht Club and only the second painting of BYC members I have done. I will be taking this painting and a few other little paintings down to the Member's Art Show on Saturday at BYC. I was hoping to have a few portraits of members to bring but I only have Inside Joke and Jeff finished. Maybe, if I bring my painting supplies to the boat, I can get one or two more painted next week during my "Week on the Island".

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


Einstein  oil - 12 x 6

Einstein is my brother and sister in-law's beautiful, black, lab. He is friendly and seems to have a way with the ladies. Every where he goes girls make fuss over him.  He doesn't seem to mind. I painted this in a day as a daily painting but I like this photo so much I may paint it again in a much more controlled style.

I refined the original daily painting of Einstein and uploaded this new photo of it. Now I like this painting much better. It is still very loose and painterly but it looks more finished.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Inside Joke

Inside Joke  oil - 8 x 10

Here are two members of Baltimore Yacht Club enjoying just being friends. I loved this photo when I saw it in the collection of photos I took of the Post Queen of the Chesapeake Pageant celebration. The lighting and the composition was just so wonderful I knew I had to paint it.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Jovan - Blue Man

Jovan - Blue Man  oil - 7 x 5 

I painted this on a dark burgundy primed canvas to see if I liked starting with a darker value and working lighter instead, of the medium value I usually begin with. This forced me to look and paint the values in a different way. I started with the highlights and worked towards the medium values and then changed the the dark values to cooler or warmer colors where they were needed. I plan on experimenting with different colors of primed backgrounds to see how they effect my paintings. 

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Sarah "Our Angel"

Sarah (Our Angel)  oil - 6 x6

Beautiful Sarah's life was taken from her but her spirit still lives in the family that loved her. Her Mom asked  me to paint this for a Father's Day gift for Sarah's dad. I can think of nothing quite as sad as the loss of a child  no matter what their age. Sarah was loved, and is very much missed every day.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


 Amanda  oil - 8 x 8

She is the middle daughter of my three daughters, but the last to have a daily painting done. Amanda has always been very photogenic so I am sure I will be painting her again. This photo was taken of her after she had been tubing behind our boat on the Middle River in Essex, Maryland two weeks ago. I really enjoy painting sunglasses on sunny faces and this was no exception. 

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

"Paint an Egg" Challenge

Reflecting Diversity  oil - 6 x 6

The Tuesday's lunch group met yesterday to reveal our paintings of the Spring Challenge to paint a painting of an egg (somewhere in the painting). Above is my painting of eggs I started painting at 7 pm the night before. Talk about procrastination! Eggs, I found, are not as easy as they look to paint but still a cool subject.  The fall challenge will be 4 months away since it seems we revealed the Spring challenge a month early (oops, my bad). The silver lining to having the spring challenge early is that we should have plenty of time to work on the Summer Challenge through the lazy, crazy days of summer. Below is the photo of those who attended lunch and a photo of the egg paintings with some painted eggs brought in to enhance the spirit of the challenge reveal.

We all had a wonderful time and are looking forward to our next challenge, selected this time, by Jodi. Thanks Jodi! 

Seasonal Challenge: Summer
Limited Pallet: primary colors, a warm and cool selection of each and white 
You must paint an painting using only the colors you mix from the limited pallet of a: 
"warm" and "cool" Red
"warm" and "cool" Blue
"warm" and "cool" Yellow
and white
So an example of your pallet might be:
alizarin red
cadmium red
ultramarine blue
cerulean  blue
indian yellow
yellow ocher 
You are not limited on your subject.
Have fun!
We will meet at Chef Lin's, in Frederick, MD, on October 4, 2011, at 12:30 to reveal our paintings.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011


Breitling  oil - 8 x 8

I did a quick little study of Breitling, a cute little "Puggle", today. She was on our boat this past weekend sporting a new life jacket. I'm not sure if it was being on a boat or wearing the life jacket but she was not too happy about the whole thing. I think if we keep bringing her along she will learn to love it. 

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


Tulips  oil - 8 x 8

Thank you Leesy for sending this cheerful photograph of tulips taken by your neighbor. I love tulips. You can't help but smile when you see them. Tulips were the flowers I chose for my April wedding, 27 year ago. The florist had to wax them open for my bouquet  so they would hold up all day but they were beautiful. 

Friday, May 20, 2011

Ocean Stones

Ocean Stones  oil - 9 x 6

This is a painting I did last fall of the coast of California. I loved all the vivid colors and shapes of the rocks in contrast to the algae in the ponds and the ocean in the background. I am working on a portrait this week but I didn't post it yet since I am not totally happy with it and I want to do an especially nice job on it. I'll post it next week. This painting is for sale, framed, on my web site for $180. 

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

It's Not Easy Being Green

A few of us artist get together every Tuesday for lunch so we came up with the first of hopefully many painting challenges, we agreed, to do every season. Today, after changing the date several times, we finally got together to show our Seasonal Challenge: Winter, "It's Not Easy Being Green". Below is a photo of the artists. You can see me taking the photo in the mirror (I kind of like that shot of me), and the paintings in the back ground.

This was a challenge not to use other colors and to focus on the values. I found I didn't like painting in only green and I think we all agree we are kind of sick of green. With that being said, I think the little paintings came out well. Many of the artist said they will go back now and add the colors they wanted to use. We had a wonderful time and are excited to see the Spring Challenge paintings.

"It's Not Easy Being Green"

The Seasonal Challenge: Spring 2011
"Paint an Egg"
The only rule is there has to be some kind of egg or eggs some where in the painting.
We will meet the first Tuesday in June
at Chef Lin in Frederick, MD at 12:30 pm
to show our paintings.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Me, Myself Portrait

Me, Myself Portrait  oil - 8 x 8

This weeks Daily Paint Works' Challenge, "The all about Me", was to paint a self portrait. I just couldn't skip this challenge since I have been painting so many portraits of other people. It was time that I became my own victim. So, I grabbed my camera, ran out side, pointed the camera back at myself (not an easy trick with a full size 35 mm) and started clicking. In this photo I think I forgot to smile but I suspect this is how I must look when I am concentrating on my work.  
To see other entries click here: DPW Challenge  

Friday, April 29, 2011


Kathy  oil - 6 x 6 

This is the first painting I have done since my return from Florida. A co-worker of my daughter, sent this photo of her friend's daughter, for me to paint. Kathy is such a cute little girl with beautiful intense eyes. I really enjoyed painting her.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Morning Watch

Morning Watch  oil - 6 x 6 

The Daily Paint Works Challenge this week was a color challenge. You were to paint a painting using a complimentary color scheme. I chose blue and orange but finding a subject that worked was the challenge for me.  I haven't entered the challenges in a couple of weeks since I have been doing portraits from the photographs that were sent to me. I wanted to do a portrait for this challenge but none of my stash of photos had just the right colors. Then, I stumbled upon some photos of our dog Tug taken a couple months ago. I had already painted Tug from one of the other photos, taken that day, in a much tighter way than this looser and smaller version of her. Tug and I go on a walks every morning and she loves to hunt for squirrels, chase squirrels and sit and watch squirrels. I named the painting Morning Watch  because this is Tug's morning (squirrel) watch face.  To see Morning Watch and other paintings entered in The Color Challenge click here: DPW Challenge.

Thursday, April 14, 2011


Gigi  oil - 6 x 6 (finished) 

I took a little time this morning to make a few minor changes. I am now pleased with the final painting.

Gigi  oil - 6 x 6

Gigi is another friend of Emily's. I am not pleased with how this turned out. The photo was beautiful so I can't blame that. Sometimes you just don't have a good painting day. I painted all day on it today and even though I'm not completely happy with it I am posting it anyway. Maybe I should take a day off from painting. 

Wednesday, April 13, 2011


Tess  oil - 6 x 6 

In loving memory of their beloved dog, a friend of mine sent a photo of Tess for me to paint. The photo was a  little blurry and lacking directional light but since Tess is gone I did the best I could with what I had. I hope they like how the painting turned out.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011


Fred  oil - 6 x 6

I have heard talk of Fred but I have yet to meet him. This is Emily's husband of 36 years. She has sent a few photos for me to paint that I have really enjoyed painting so far. Thanks Emily! In this painting I included the hint of the barns in the background from the photo.  He looks like the kind of guy who wouldn't sit to have his portrait taken so including the barn I think works.  

Monday, April 11, 2011

Something Borrowed

Something Borrowed   oil - 24 x 18 

Almost two years ago Kate and Tim were married. I offered to do a painting, of their choosing, for a wedding gift. After much debate on what photograph I should use, I started painting about six months ago and finished it today. Finally. This was very tedious to paint. I had to number the buttons so I would know which one I was working on and count from the bottom up or from the top down. Each time I looked away to load my brush with more paint, I would lose my place and have to count all over again. I think I could have painted another six months and not have the buttons exactly perfect but am pleased with the finished results. Although this is not a "daily" painting, I thought you would enjoy seeing it.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Joyce Ann

Joyce Ann  oil - 10 x 8 

The hardest part of this painting was trying to decide what to title it.  Joyce Ann is her given name but we all know her mostly as Grandma, or Grandmom. To me she is just Mom. She didn't think I had a photo of her to paint but alas I did. This was taken after breakfast while visiting her brother and his wife in Cape May, NJ last summer.

Monday, April 4, 2011


Harold oil - 6 x 6

Here is a man who has worked hard, raised five kids and recently retired from General Motors. He is also my brother-in law, Chrissy's (I did a portrait of her last month) dad and a pretty cool guy. One of his kids sent this photo for me to paint. This blog has had a run on cute little girl portraits so Harold was a nice change to paint.  I decided to stay here in Florida and to continue painting daily while enjoying the amazing weather here... at least until the end of April.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011


Kai  oil - 6 x 6

My niece Kai will be my last portrait painted in Florida. I hope I will be able to keep up this pace and paint about two portraits a week once I am home. I have a few back logged photos to paint now.  I can always use more so keep sending them. I will get to them eventually.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Live Model

Florida Girl  oil - 18 x 14

Over the last four weeks I have been taking a portrait class at the Elliott Museum in Stewart, FL. Florida Girl is of the beautiful 16 year old model that sat for us. I enjoyed the time I had with the other artists and our model was wonderful. It is not easy for a model to sit still for three hours (with breaks) for the four session but she did very well. I took a picture of her so I could finish her hands at home since it is nearly impossible to get the exact hand position each time she sat down. But, I decided to leave it sketchy like it is. The Elliot Museum had us painting in the antique car exhibit. among antique cars. The smell of turpentine and oil paint mixed with the smell of engine oil and musty leather. The people visiting the museum didn't seem to mind us painting there. 

Photo of our model

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Erin Kathleen

Erin Kathleen  oil - 6 x 6

My friend Kathy's granddaughter extraordinaire, Erie. This is the first of the photos sent to me of someone that I have not met (but would love to). Children are more challenging for me to paint. I think because, they are lacking the character that life adds to an older face. Thanks for the Photo Kathy!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011


Sarah  oil - 6 x 6

Here is the first of the photos that were sent to me so far. My cousin sent several photos of her  beautiful daughter Sarah so that I could choose my favorite to paint. I decided on this photo, even though they were all good. I loved the soft glow on her face with the flowers in the background and her wispy hair. I thought it had an old fashion, almost cherub, quality to it. Keep sending photos to me, and tell your friends. I don't need to know the person to paint them. 

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

....why can't I paint you?

Send your photos to me!
My selection, of portrait photographs, is dwindling. I have decided to make a call for photos that you would like for me to paint and post here on my blog. The paintings would be approximately 6x6 inches, painted in oil, and available for sale on my web site. You will be under no obligation to purchase the painting and I will reserve the right not to paint photos that don't inspire me. The photos don't need to be cropped, I'll do that.  Permission from the photographer, to use a photograph must be given to avoid any copyright violations. Natural light (taken outside or by a window) verses photos taken with a flash are usually much better. I don't know how many photos will be sent to me (if any), so I can't promise when you will see them posted on the blog. But, keep checking and hopefully I will have some amazing portraits posted here in the future. Send your photos to dpkaelber@comcast.net .

Monday, March 21, 2011


Donnell  oil - 6 x 6

I loved painting this. The warm and cool colors in this painting really compliment each other. I also just love the way Donnell is enjoying the sun on his face. The photo I used to paint this, is just another of Rachel's  St. Mary's college photos that found their way to my computer.

Thursday, March 17, 2011


Rachel  oil - 6 x 6

On the Potomac River between Point of Rocks,  Md and Harpers Ferry, WV, there is a rapid with a four foot drop in the river. This makes for an exciting ride on a kayak or just swimming. In this painting, Rachel is sitting on one of these rocks above the rapids, resting after swimming, as the sun was setting. 

Monday, March 14, 2011


Leesy  oil - 6 x 6

This is Emily's friend Leesy. She enjoys following my blog, so a little bird whispered in my ear and told me she would really enjoy seeing a portrait of herself on my blog. Surprise! This portrait is of you Leesy! My three girls are visiting me here in florida this week. They are sun bathing on the beach while I enjoyed a quiet day painting.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Mister Ben

Mister Ben  oil - 6 x 6

Here's Ben a nice change from all the females I have been painting. He's also a nice change from all the Kaelber females too, when he is around. I'm looking forward to seeing him this week.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011


Chrissy oil - 10 x 10

This is my niece Chrissy having a fun day on the Chesapeake Bay. She goes to college in the northern most part of Michigan so I hope this brings her thoughts of the warm sun on her face. I painted this one a little larger because I now have painted on all the 6x6 gesso boards I brought to Florida. It's almost four times as large, so it almost took four times as long to paint. 

Thursday, March 3, 2011


Elizabeth  oil - 6 x6

My daughter Rachel and her best friend, Elizabeth, will be visiting us here in sunny Florida next week. I loved this photograph taken while she and my daughter were playing in the snow on their college campus. Sometimes a portrait almost paints it self and practically jumps onto the canvas but that was not the case this time. Maybe because I started late in the day yesterday. Whatever the reason, after redoing all the features at least once I am pretty happy with the results.

Monday, February 28, 2011


Emily  oil - 6 x 6

This is the the latest DPW Challenge, The One Stroke per Color Challenge. I chose to paint a portrait since I have been on this portrait kick for my daily paintings. Emily is a fellow artist and a very good friend. She has encouraged me in art with amazing enthusiasm. Emily is quite a beautiful and colorful lady. I know I have not done her justice but all the colors painted with one stroke each, in this painting, suits her. This was really fun to paint.

Saturday, February 26, 2011


Madeline  oil - 6 x 6

My niece, Madeline had her birthday this week. She is two years old. I did this painting of her from an older photograph that my brother took and sent to me. She looks very serious here but she is a very lovely happy child. This makes two portraits in two days. How long can I keep this up?

Friday, February 25, 2011

Laura Lynn

Laura Lynn  oil - 6 x 6

On February 5, 1986 Laura Lynn, our first born, was brought into the world. She has brought sunshine into our lives ever since. This is the first portrait I have painted as a daily painting for posting on my blog. I want to do these often, then maybe, I will get much better at them. This summer I will be taking photographs of people to collect and later paint. If you don't want your picture taken and you see me with a camera you better hide because I plan on taking hundreds of photos. This way I will have a lot to choose from.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Zippo Lighter Challenge

This weeks Daily Paint Works Challenge is to paint from a photo of a zippo lighter, supplied by DPW, but the catch is, you could only use a limited palette of Ultramarine Blue, Burnt Sienna, and Titanium White.

Need a Light?  oil - 6 x 6

This exercise reminded me of the advantages of a limited palette. For one thing, the painting can't help but have color harmony. Also, there wasn't as much need for color mixing and therefore values become the focus, as they always should be anyway. I am looking forward to seeing what DPW comes up with for a challenge next week. 

Monday, February 21, 2011

Add a Twist

Add a Twist  oil - 6 x 6

This is a little still life I set up on a piece of granite. I liked how the shadows and the reflections all intersect while the granite colors still can be seen through the reflections on it's shinny surface.