Autumn Reflections from a Tuscan Studio

Molino, Autumn 2014

It has been a wet autumn here in Tuscany, and that following a very wet summer. Italy has been inundated by November’s storms adding to the heaviness of an already disastrous olive harvest. Makes for a slightly maudlin mood for the locals. Rainy weather means more time for me in the studio, happily working away… of course, on my newest water paintings. Continue reading “Autumn Reflections from a Tuscan Studio”

Salvatore Ferragamo, Terroir and Painting Azul

October has come and gone, and with it the last of Tuscany’s balmy weather… fall colors are slowly making their appearance. Now with November’s rains here in Tuscany I am able to immerse myself in the studio.. wistful, now, however for a little sunshine!

It was a glorious sunny day when we filmed out last scenes of Terroir earlier this summer at Il Borro’s Vin Cafe, an appropriate wine tasting scene which featured Salvatore Ferragamo, his friends and Terroir actor Gaetano Guarino.

After filming, Salvatore asked me if I would paint a portrait of his favorite polo pony Azul.
I’ve painted several of the Ferragamo’s hunting dogs over the years, commissions I have done with pleasure.

We first met Azul in July, where she was a scene-stealer during our principal photography with Salvatore at the Borro.

I recently spent a happy afternoon taking photos of Azul that I will use for references. Within moments she began to reveal her character, what I truly hope to capture in her portrait.

“cheeky Azul” !

Animals, and horses in particular, were my favorite subjects when I was oil painting as a kid.

Presenting a horse portrait to my Oma, above her shoulder was the first horse I had ever painted. Age 11.

To this day, I still paint animals whenever I can. Check out the animal and still life paintings in my Flora and Fauna Gallery on my website.

Portrait completed!

….and a private vernissage with Salvatore and his artist-to-be Wanda…

Commission a painting by Caroline Zimmermann

Related:

Return to Il Borro – Part One: Terroir
Thanksgiving with the Cast and Crew of “Terroir”

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A Summer Sunset Surf Session with Mickey Muñoz

Summer has at long last come to the Southern California Coast and these last few evenings have been gorgeous enough to tempt me back into the water. In anticipation of my upcoming exhibition at Gallery McCollum, No Bad Paintings, No Bad Waves, where Mickey Muñoz will be signing his new book, we had the pleasure of a sunset surf together at Doheny.

I suppose you could say Mickey has been my “surf mentor” over the years… if you equate “surf” = “life”. Since our first surf session at his beloved Middles in 1984, I have shared many many waves with Mickey – since long before he became my brother-in-law – and looked to him as a role model in how to live Life to the fullest degree.

My Precious Michel Junod Patagonia board has been my favorite for over 16 years…. and a pre-surf waxing up still one of my Life’s greatest pleasures….

Checking the surf… and check out this board: Mickey shapes all his stand-up paddle boards. Fabulous.

Mickey’s fin and my All Saints shorts

Yes, it’s summer, Caroline still wears a wetsuit…

See more photos of Caroline

The last time I surfed with Mickey at Doheny was for his 70th birthday.. next month he will be 75!

Still talking Story….

My first wave since surfing in February…

Mickey, of course, dominates…. he is in great form…surfing rings around all of us!

My last wave of the evening with Mickey….

Just a moment to reflect on the simple beauty of a summer evening, fun waves, the company of a good friend, and my last six months.

Gratitude.

… and gratitude for John for taking these lovely photos!

“Victoria Sunset” Laguna Beach, California by Caroline Zimmermann

Photos by John Charles Jopson

The artist’s reception for No Bad Paintings, No Bad Waves is on August 25, 2012 at  Gallery McCollum 206 North Coast Highway, Laguna Beach CA, 92651   (949) 497-4027

Mickey will be signing his book, “No Bad Waves: Talking Story with Mickey Muñoz” from 3:00PM on, and he’ll be showing some of his unique photographs as well. It will be a very rare opportunity to buy an original photograph by Mickey Muñoz – and celebrate his 75th birthday!

Books will be available for purchase at the gallery. You can also pre-buy the book at your local book shop, from Patagonia, or at this link on Amazon.com.

For invitations please sign up for Caroline’s Mailing List.

Related: No Bad Paintings No Bad Waves Blog Post

View more of Caroline’s surf paintings and photos.

Preview paintings  for the “No Bad Paintings, No Bad Waves” exhibition.

View Caroline’s recent and available works at her Virtual Gallery.

Photos by John Charles Jopson

About Caroline

Full Slideshow below:

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Return to Il Borro – Part 2: The Chianina Cows

caroline_zimmermann_borro

One of my fondest memories of living at Il Borro is the sight of the Chianina cattle grazing on the rolling hills of the estate’s countryside.

Salvatore Ferragamo first introduced me to the Chianine of Borro years ago. Alvaro, a farmer on the estate, had a beauty that he kept in one of the old farmhouses. When we were filming at the estate recently I asked Salvatore if I could have a private visit with the herd, and I was delighted to see them once again, now multiplied several-fold.

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“Alvaro’s Bull” 2002

They are a gorgeous breed of cattle, indigenous to the Tuscany region where they have been raised for over 2200 years.

Originally bred as beasts of burden, they are now in high demand for their very tasty and lean meat. The famous Bistecca Fiorentina should be made of a T-bone cut from none other than the Chianina. Seeing them here in this noble setting it was difficult for me to think of them as simply meat on the hoof.

borro_cows

I have created countless paintings of these lovely creatures.

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I feel a deep connection with these animals… the sight of them evokes to me a Tuscany of another era.

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Their  distinctive white color, elegant profile and shape of their horns make me think back even further, to the origins of human life in Europe and the advent of agriculture, as the stunning, recently discovered cave paintings of Lascaux demonstrate.

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Some of the many Chianine in the Ferragamo’s herd…

Related: Tuscany paintings

 

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No Bad Paintings, No Bad Waves

Caroline Zimmermann “Quasinudo”

UPDATE (Sept 1): For those who missed the Artist Reception for “No Bad Paintings, No Bad Waves” Caroline will make a special appearence at Gallery McCollum for First Thursdays Art Walk in Laguna Beach. September 6 from 6 – 9PM. More info. View paintings.

UPDATE (August 15): The exhibition is now set for Saturday August 25, 2012 at Gallery McCollum. Mickey’s book signing begins at 3PM and the artist’s reception runs until 9PM. For invitations please sign up for my  Mailing List.

I’m very excited to announce an upcoming exhibition of my latest paintings at Gallery McCollum in Laguna Beach this summer. I’ll be showing a whole new series of seascapes and tropical water paintings as well as my recent work from Tuscany and Provence.

My brother-in-law, surf legend Mickey Muñoz, will be signing his new Patagonia-published book “No Bad Waves: Talking Story with Mickey Muñoz”.

From Patagonia: “Mickey Muñoz has been called the “surfer’s surfer,” and is loved and respected among the cognoscenti for his contributions to surfing and the surfing life for the past 60 years as a surfer, a pioneer of Waimea Bay, a stuntman (stand-in for Gidget), a board shaper and designer, and as a sailor and boatbuilder (America’s Cup). Mentored by the Malibu greats of the ’40s, and an influence on generations of surfers since, Mickey weaves the story of a California waterman using his own life and that of his friends.”

Mickey Munoz
Mickey Muñoz and Caroline Zimmermann

Mickey’s take on life has always been an inspiration to me and I’m looking forward to our little colaboration. The show is now scheduled for Saturday, August 25, 2012. Mickey’s book signing begins at 3PM and the artist’s reception begins at 6PM. Mickey will also be showing some of his unique photographs, running a slide show, and we’ll all be celebrating his 75th birthday! If you’d like to be added to the mailing list please sign up here.

Mickey’s book “No Bad Waves: Talking Story with Mickey Muñoz” will be available for purchase at the gallery. You can also pre-buy it at your local book shop or at this link on Amazon.com.

Caroline Zimmermann, Suiting Up at Thalia Street

Related: A Summer Sunset Surf Session with Mickey Muñoz

View more of Caroline’s surf paintings and photos.

Preview paintings  for “No Bad Paintings, No Bad Waves”.

View Caroline’s recent and available works at her Virtual Gallery.

Gallery McCollum 206 North Coast Highway, Laguna Beach CA, 92651   (949) 497-4027

About Caroline

“Tavarua Set Wave”   by Caroline Zimmermann. Available as a Limited Edition Print

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Summer Sojourn 2012

Lavender in Bloom

After more than 23 summers at the Laguna Beach Festival of Arts, times are a changing and I am moving on. It was not an easy decision to relinquish my exhibitor’s space at the Festival as I have spent almost half of my life’s summers there. Many of those involved with the Festival are like family to me, and I will miss their company. I am greatly indebted to the Festival of Arts. As a fledgeling artist, it gave me the opportunity to make a career of the Labor I Love. My heartfelt thanks goes out to those dedicated people who have made the Festival what it is today: A piece of California’s history that for 80 years has done much to promote and sustain the Arts in Laguna Beach.

My decision has allowed me to spend more time with my family and has opened up new opportunities to paint the summer light of Tuscany and Provence and also complete the production of some additional scenes for our independent film, Terroir, directed by my husband John Charles Jopson.

Jonathan Bragg (Keith Carradine) with my “King Oak” painting.

As I’m both the Producer and the Art Director, I consider Terroir my biggest work yet!

We’ll be editing for the rest of the summer, and into the autumn in Berlin, then in December it’s back to Ealing Studios in London for final post-production.

On the set of “Terroir” – Villa Petrolo
 And a spectacular explosion of color from this spring’s poppies coincided with my completion of this large commission for dear clients in Texas…
A Recent Commission

Those visiting Laguna Beach this summer and expecting to find me at the Festival of Arts can see my work in the Summer 2012 Group Coastal Show at Gallery McCollum, which runs from June 23 through the end of summer.

Laguna Beach painting
“Vintage South Laguna” Laguna Beach

Later in the summer I’ll be returning to the Hollister Ranch Hoedown benefit where this year 50% of the proceeds of the Art Show will go toward the Hollister Ranch Fire Company. Then on August 25th I’ll have my solo show No Bad Paintings, No Bad Waves at Gallery McCollum featuring a book signing with Mickey Muñoz.

And of course you can always visit my Virtual Gallery to see my latest paintings available for purchase online – a few of which are featured below…

“Three Lemon Still Life”
“Mid-summer’s Dream, Tuscany”
“St Augustine’s” Hollister Ranch

Commission a painting

Related:

Thanksgiving with the Cast and Crew of Terroir

Return to Il Borro – Part 1: Terroir

About Caroline

 

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Tuscan Primavera: Poppies

Sixteen years of scouring the Tuscan Countryside, and I still wonder to myself, why did it take so long for me to appreciate this dazzling springtime display?

A Recent Commission

Click here to view the full blog. (It’s on my previous blog space).

Autumn’s Glory and Halloween in Tuscany!

Caroline Zimmermann, Firenze, Autumn 2011

Enchanted October! The Sun continues to shine and spectacular days unfold as autumn colors here in Tuscany are the best they’ve been in years. The fabulous weather continues to draw us outside.. filming for John’s independent film Terroir
and a pleasant distraction from my work: a return visit from our dear friend Mike Dunn from Santa Barbara.
Time spent with Mike is consumed with re-tracing old wine tasting routes through Chianti,
visiting friends and of course the practice of Il Dolce di Far Niente… the sweetness of doing nothing, save occupying ourselves with the tasting of some very fine wines.

Click here to view the full post. (It’s on my previous blog space!)