My paintings at the Punahou Carnival

2 02 2014

“Kaaawa Beach Park”


20140202-083720.jpg“Red Trunks”

Good morning, art lovers! I am offering these three recent oil painting originals of mine to the Punahou Carnival for sale in the Art Gallery booth this weekend! Feb. 7 and 8.

The deal is 50-50. Half of the money is donated to the student financial aid program (that’s how my parents could afford to enroll me at Punahou) and half is paid to the artist.

Art is just one of the scores and scores of attractions at this annual Honolulu event. Good eats, music, rides, games, crafts, plants, white elephant, variety show, midway, and more.

The main walk-in entrance is at Punahou and Wilder streets. But here’s a great tip: Park your ride at Central Union Church (Punahou and Beretania) and walk.

Bring moola to spend. It’s for a good cause. Maybe I’ll see you there!

Copyright 2014 Rebekah Luke

Pictures of an exhibition

3 11 2013

Thank you — friends, supporters, studio fans, and patrons — from the bottom of my heart. These are a few images of yesterday’s enjoyable opening day of “Hana Hou: Then & Now” at Ho’omaluhia Botanical Garden.



Panorama Hana Hou




















Travel: the journey

27 10 2013

Let me suggest travel. Travel away from home for a change of scenery. To view another culture. To make new friends. Alone, with a buddy, 5 miles or 5,000 miles, it doesn’t matter. Just go.

For me, traveling forces me to focus and experience the present. It often makes me uncover inner resources I didn’t know I had. It’s great for clearing the fog in my mind, allowing more space there to observe and consider life’s options. Travel to the new, different, or unfamiliar presents other perspectives to weave into our future.

I’m giving this some thought this Sunday morning while getting ready for an art show I’m installing on Friday. I thought of some examples:

• My second to the eldest cousin K.Y., in his 80s, and his wife traveled every year since they were married, always taking the kids. Their philosophy was, why wait until we’re retired. Now their adult children and their children are of the same mind, happy and well-balanced. The whole family also has a love of hiking into the mountains or to the seashore, an activity also begun when the children were young. I paint with K.Y. almost every week. He’s a fascinating conversationalist and very kind.

• My teacher, colleague and friend Lori is coming back the day I install the art show from a month of driving, alone I think, across the continental US where she had some space (as contrasted to living on an island), called on former college buddies and sampled the regional cuisine. They’re foodies. Aren’t we all? She reports on Facebook every day, but I can’t wait to hear her stories in person.

• My other teacher Alice Anne, a professional psychic (both Lori and Alice Anne attuned me to Reiki), advised me that the periods of growth in my marriage would be during times of travel. We’ve found that to be so, away from the routine of daily living. She helped me interpret a recurring childhood dream of mine. Aunty Ethel who I was afraid of–she was my mother’s eldest sister, single, a missionary, and stern–was in the dream. Anyway, the message was that I should climb walls, cross barriers and venture out across the ocean to see “the big wide world, no be scared.” Aunty Ethel was my ally.

• My latest trip abroad was a month in Italy, you may have read. I wrote about it, including the recipes, on my travel blog. You don’t actually have to make the food. Just reading about it might make you hungry. This was my second trip in a year to Italy. DH came along and so did a villa-ful of my painting students. A short, spur-of-the-moment jaunt traveling solo to Oregon to sing and learn about choral music conducting from Rod preceded this. And along with that, closer to home in Hauula down the road, a writing/performance workshop taught by Mark who was on his way around-the-world for his 70th birthday. I’m so grateful for the remarkable experiences I’ve had this past summer. Traveling!

Which brings me to a call to action for you. Yes, you are encouraged to travel this Saturday to Ho‘omaluhia Botanical Garden in Kaneohe, Oahu. I am surprised at how many people I know who have not visited there. It is a beautiful cultivated garden at the foot of the Ko‘olau Mountains. You can take in the spectacular scenery, read the plant labels, take your kids to feed the ducks or try their luck at catch-and-release fishing. The entrance is at the end of Luluku Road.

AND, I invite you to attend the opening reception of “Hana Hou: Then & Now,” a new art exhibit of oil paintings at Ho‘omaluhia park by Yours Truly and gourd artist Tamsen Fox. Saturday, November 2, from 1 to 3 p.m. at the Visitor Center Lecture Room. The collection features two versions each of eight Hawaiian landscapes, painted once, and then a second time when I revisited years later. The show will be up until Nov. 29 from 9 to 4 daily. On Tuesdays we will be there and you can watch us make art. When you see the landscapes you can imagine yourself traveling even farther to a different time and place. So it will be with the 3D pieces that will reflect both contemporary and ancient cultures.

We’ll take you there. It’s fun.

Hana Hou invitation.inddCopyright 2013 Rebekah Luke

The Italy paintings

11 10 2013

photoMy time in Italy was productive! I made two oil paintings, influenced by the style of Tuscan artist/teacher Agostino Veroni. What do you think? My students and I learned some time-saving techniques. Of course, while Veroni takes only 2-1/2 hours to make a painting start to finish, I took a little longer, but not much more than a day for each.

If you didn’t have time to follow me in Italy, my reports are still up at Popo Goes to Italy. There are several posts about the painting experience abroad. Have a wonderful day!

"My Corniglia," 30 x 40 cm, oil on canvas, by Rebekah Luke

“My Corniglia,” 30 x 40 cm, oil on canvas, by Rebekah Luke

“Pool at Villa Minghetti,” 30 x 40 cm, oil on canvas, by Rebekah Luke

Copyright 2013 Rebekah Luke

Kids and me at the Filipino Fiesta

12 05 2013

Anxious to finish another painting, I headed out to Kapiolani Park yesterday only to find the Annual Filipino Fiesta staged there. It’s Saturday. Duh. I didn’t care. It takes me an hour to drive there from the studio, and DH gave up the use of our one car, so I felt I had to take advantage of the opportunity.

I circumnavigated the park twice after deciding to not park illegally and before squeezing into a spot on Leahi avenue that my friend Pi‘ikea would term “in the next county.”

Plein air oil painters lug their French easels, paints, and what-have-you all over the creation. We need to be there for the light. So I hoofed it.

I visualized my painting spot empty as I walked toward the iconic ironwood-lined path, and it was! Right in the middle of a pedestrian aisle lined with two rows of tent booths and across from the food booths and their aroma, each with a long line of customers.

The tinikling and other Filipino and pop tunes from the bandstand blared, and I welcomed another of day of painting to music. The one I did at the recent Bluegrass Hawaii festival was successful.

"Bluegrass Hawaii," 20"x16" oil on canvas

“Bluegrass Hawaii,” 20″x16″ oil on canvas

As you might imagine there were a lot of spectators, photographers, and videographers who stopped to watch me paint. I’m happy to stop and converse. What I like the best are the children. Here’s a sample of their comments and questions (some adults ask the same things):

Kid: What kind of paint is that?
Me: Oil paint.
Kid: Did you draw that?
Me: Uh huh.
Kid: How long did it take you to paint that?
Me: This is my fourth or fifth time out.
Kid: Are the people in the painting still there?
Me: Try look. Are they?
Kid: What are you going to call your painting?
Me: How about “Ironwood Path at Kapiolani Park”? “Diamond Head” is too ordinary, don’t you think?
Kid: (smiles widely and nods approval)
Kid (noticing the vista): Oh, look! She’s painting that!
Kid: Wow, you have a lot of colors.
Me: Do you like to draw?
Kid: Yes.
Kid: Are you going to be an artist when you grow up?
Older kid (punching the first kid in the arm): She IS an artist.
Me: Yup, when I grow up.
Me and Taxx, who I just met, with my painting in progress, i.e., it is not from completed (Photo by Taxx's photographer)

Me and Taxx, who I just met, with my painting in progress, i.e., it is not completed. I am revisiting some places I painted about 20 years ago and painting them again. This is one of them. I hope to mount an exhibit to compare the art works. Is there any growth? Have I grown up?  (Photo by Taxx’s photographer)

Copyright 2013 Rebekah Luke

Kamaipuupaa, the Prince Lot festival hula mound

22 02 2013
Painting en plein air

Painting en plein air

One of my favorite sanctuaries on Oʻahu is Moanalua Gardens where I went with my students to paint en plein air earlier this month. A pleasant place to rest, picnic, and entertain, it is privately owned but open to the public. I find it peaceful and healing to go there.

We can go there for free during daylight hours most days. It is popular with young families, pre-school groups, Japanese tourists, artists, and lovers. That sounds busy, but the park is large enough that you can find a spot for yourself. Lucky for us at least a bit of the area of the cultured Gardens remains, for it used to cover three times the area. Imagine the beauty back when.

Every July, the day-long Prince Lot Hula Festival draws an audience of about 10,000 people who relax in the shade of the trees and enjoy viewing the dance by invited hula hālau (troupes) on the outdoor hula mound. This year the event is scheduled for Saturday, July 20, 2013, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

On three outings there this month, while busloads of Japanese tourists came to photograph the famous Hitachi tree (Hitachi, Ltd. pays for the rights to use the image of the grand, old monkeypod tree as its logo), while the gardeners operated their loud maintenance equipment, and while the elementary school children next door enjoyed their recess, I could still find my zone to paint the hula , romantically back-lit by the morning sun.

Japanese visitors come to see the “Hitachi tree” and have their photo taken in front of it.

Moanalua pond

A koi pond adjacent to a loʻi kalo (taro garden) attracts ducks, youngsters and photographers. The banyan in the background is just one of many mature trees here.

My finished painting “Kamaipuupaa,” 24″ x 18″ oil on canvas panel. The grassy hula mound is the venue for the annual Prince Lot Hula Festival at Moanalua Gardens in July. If you plan to go this summer, please verify the date in local news media.

Copyright 2013 Rebekah Luke

Big, beautiful, colorful holiday gift ideas from me to you

28 11 2012

Perhaps this is the year you want to give something big and long-lasting to your special someone. I have an idea! How about a piece of fine art?

An oil painting that you like, for example, can be more affordable than you think and retains its value over time. It can brighten a home or office interior and bring cheer to the environment.

Most local artists and even art galleries are willing to negotiate retail prices and work with customers to allow them to purchase on layaway — in installments. Don’t be afraid to talk to the artist, ask questions, and perhaps move that item from your wish list to the reality of your collection!

Considering it’s holiday time, and everyone is marketing their wares, here’s some shameless “hard sell” on my part. I invite you to view my virtual gallery of paintings once again at and hope you’ll consider making a purchase or tell a friend. There are also a few in my retrospective collection that I could be persuaded to part with.

“Clouds Lifting Over Lanihuli”

Hawaiian places — places you have been or places where you’d rather be — are my favorite subject. Each painting is a one-of-a-kind original (sorry, I haven’t made any reproductions) and comes with a frame ready to hang.

Welcome Spring – 2010

Thank you so very much for your consideration! Happy holidays!

“Kuilima Cove”

Looking Down Upon the Path – 2008

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