March & April Events

I have 15 paintings that will be on view at Many Hands Gallery in Capitola, CA as part of their Birds & Bees show.  Let me know if you stop by or need me to come meet you for a cup of coffee when you stop to see the show.  Gayle's Bakery is just a few doors down.  What more could you want? 

Some of the new work are this group of new encaustic paintings.  These 6x6" paintings all group together nicely.

I did say it was a birds & bees show.  Here are the bees.  Three new 12x12" oil and wax on wood panel. 

A bit more information about the show and the list of other artists who are participating.

In the coming days I will post more detailed images of all of the pieces in this show.  In addition to these pieces, I have a great jump start on the year's work and have quite a few things going on in the studio.  I will also be hosting an open studio in April.

In the thick of things

 Things are really cooking in the studio now.  I've got lots going on and look forward to sharing them with you soon.   A preview of things to come.  I will get better photos soon.  I promise.

In the studio

This is from a series that I'm working on.  Oil, wax & spackle over wood panel.

 On the easel

Detail of one of these pieces.  This painting is of the large oak outside of my studio window.

May Day

Goodbye April

I can't say that this month was very productive in the studio, as there was a bit of a lull after hanging my solo show at Regale Winery. Then came my children's Spring Break followed immediately with jump-starting our spring house projects. Speaking of our house, it's been three years since we've moved into our Santa Cruz Mountains home. Happy house anniversary! It's a bit of a fixer-upper, but with time it'll get to where we want it. In the meantime, the weather is warming so it's time to garden, be outside with the chickens, and dare I say it... contemplate getting honey bees.
During my hiatus from the studio, I have to admit that my head and heart were still in it. By the time I jumped back into my work, I had a million ideas spinning. It felt great to start making art again. I couldn't wait to return to encaustic painting. I've also been reading up on beekeeping, so bees are on my mind. You'll likely see some of the results of those two preoccupations in the following weeks here on my blog.

In the meantime, I wanted to share some upcoming art events.

My show at Regale Winery is up for another month. If you missed the opening, the show is up until May 30. Don't forget to sign my guestbook!

I will be showing some of my birds & bees paintings at Many Hands Gallery in May & June. Many Hands Gallery is located next to Gayle's Bakery in Capitola. Fabulous baked goods + art, all by the beach. Sounds like the perfect field trip to me.


If you're in the Bay Area, and you don't want to shlep up all the way up the mountain to come for a studio visit, then just stop by Los Gatos Framing Company. I have 12 paintings on view there for the next month or so. There are two small bee paintings and five encaustic paintings, in addition to the pieces below.

Eastern Shore

Salt Marsh (one of my favorites)

The owner & staff of Los Gatos Framing Company. are incredibly nice and really know there stuff when it comes to custom framing. Lots of local art in there. Right next door to the new Title Nine shop, and you don't have to dodge chickens and dogs like you would if you came for a studio visit. Let me know if you stop by the frame shop!

I Think I'm In Love

I've always wanted to try my hand at encaustic painting. This is a process that involves painting with melted beeswax that's been mixed with damar resin and pigment. Each layer of paint/wax is fused with the layer below by using a heat source, such as a torch. It's an ancient process, and also surprisingly stable and strong. What's appealing to me is that with all of those layers of wax and paint, the effect can be very luminous and ethereal.
This past summer I attended a demo by the women who run WaxWorksWest, an encaustic studio in Corralitos, CA. The demo was impressive, and I immediately signed up for one of their one-day workshops. I learned a lot in that one day, and I'm really looking forward to going back. Here are some of my fellow classmates in the Encaustic Boot Camp Class:

Here we have a hot plate heated to about 200 degrees. Those little tins hold the pigment and wax combo. A flat thermometer helps us keep track of the surface temperature. If the wax is overheated, it can become toxic. Several box fans keep the area well ventilated. The best part was playing with fire, in this case butane torches, to fuse the wax. I somehow managed not to ignite anything that I wasn't supposed to.

At the end of the day, I had four completed pieces. I loved the process. To me, it was such an experimental and playful process. I had a blast, and can't wait to make more.
Detailed images of these paintings soon to come.

I've started gathering the materials and tools needed to do these on my own, in my studio. In the meantime, I've signed up for another day-long workshop. Care to join me on November 12th for the Encaustic Transfer Techniques class? You can see the complete class list and schedule on their website:

Free to a Good Home

Choose one of these little lovelies to take home... (see below)

Exit Stage Right, 2x2" oil on canvas

Little Bee: Yellow

Little Bee: Blue

To sweeten the deal: Acquire any one of my available paintings and choose one of these mini paintings to keep as well. Oil on canvas, measuring 2"x 2".

Homeward Bound

Homeward Bound
4x4", Oil on canvas
©2010 Giselle Gautreau

(canvas is on 1 1/2" stretcher bars so has a little depth when hanging on the wall. Sides are painted, so no need for framing.)

available: $125

The Bee Hive is Occupied

I was commissioned to paint the front panel of this new beehive for friends. I was thrilled to hear that my friend S. was on her way home with approximately 20,000 bees, all in cardboard boxes on the backseat of her car. I got to hear about how heavy the box was, and how it felt warm to the touch. I couldn't wait to come see the bees in their new home.

I've been told that the bees like having the painting on their hive. It helps them find their way home. They apparently are loving the magnolia blossoms nearby and beat a steady path back and forth all day. I look forward to trying some of their honey.


I received a commission to paint a front panel of a new beehive.  The hive belongs to friends, and I'm looking forward to visiting their new bees.  The view depicted is from their house, of the Santa Cruz Mountains. 




The panel, albeit a bit crooked & blurry & with a fair amount of glare:

I'll post more photos later, of the beehive in it's new location, with the new occupants.