Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Season's Greetings!

"Red Barn In Winter"
8x10 oil

Reposting this winter scene that was painted last February along McCormick Road in Mechanicsburg.

Wishing everyone a very Merry Christmas 
Happy New Year!

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Glowing Forest

10x8 oil

The light was so beautiful yesterday - bright sun low in the sky, streaming through the fall foliage - the woods were glowing with a canopy of color.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Historic Haldeman Mansion

8x10 oil

I went out today looking for some fall color to paint and ended up being more interested in the layered surface of this old building, the historic Haldeman Mansion in Bainbridge, PA

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Painting a Wedding...

16x20 oil on canvas

Yesterday I painted live during a wedding ceremony along the Yellow Breeches at Allenberry Resort in Boiling Springs, PA.  It was a commission request from the bride and groom who wanted a plein air painter to capture the setting of their special day.

This is the second time I have painted as part of a wedding.  I feel I am a bit more comfortable with it but there are certainly challenges with each situation.  The biggest challenge is time.  I arrived 2 hours early to set up and paint the entire background.  I only had about 30 minutes to quickly paint in the figures and a suggestion of a guest audience.   Here is the painting just before the figures arrived...

If you would like to see more of my work please visit my website

Monday, October 12, 2015

Autumn Orchard

11x14 oil

Beautiful fall morning for painting at Strite's Orchard.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Vintage Jag


Perfect early fall weather for the Harvest of the Arts/Antique Auto Show in Carlisle today, I had so much fun painting the gorgeous curves and creamy color of this vintage Jaguar.  It was purchased wet off the easel.  Great day!

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Chincoteague Channel

7x21 oil

Last week I participated in the plein air event on Chincoteague Island for the 5th year.  I love this place and always find new things to paint.  This scene across the channel is one that I've thought about painting for years.  It is my favorite part of the drive to the island - the road that crosses the marshy channel from the main land to Chincoteague. There are not many places to pull off on the road but I had someone drop me off there for a few hours so I could paint this.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Harrisburg Gallery Walk

If you are heading out this Sunday, the 13th for Gallery Walk in Harrisburg you will see my work in 4 different locations.  I have 2 paintings at the Art Association of Harrisburg as part of their "Structures" show, 5 new paintings at Gallery @ Second in their upstairs gallery, 2 paintings at City House Bed & Breakfast as part of an exhibit of the Susquehanna Valley Plein Air Painters, and 10 paintings uptown at the Manor on Front along with pieces from other local artists.  It is a great opportunity to see some of the new things I have been working on!


Field of Flowers

8x16 oil

I took a drive to the South side of Chambersburg today to seek out this sunflower field which a friend alerted me to.  I was delighted to find a massive field with thousands of yellow heads.  Most were just past their prime but it still was well worth the trip!

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Tree Mural

Last week I did this mural for a customer in Florida - a tree mural in soft neutrals and metallics - as a backdrop for their 3 sculptures.  I am very happy with how this turned out and how the tree creates an environment for the figures, suggesting a conversation.  They compliment each other.

The Red Settee

14x18 oil

On Friday I joined a group of artists to paint from a live model.
I haven't painted the figure in a long time and it felt great, but I am looking forward to more practice.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Star Barn

16x12 oil

I did this painting on location at the Star Barn a few weeks ago.  Many artists have painted this local icon, but I wanted to try my own rendition.  The barn will soon be moved to a private location and I wanted to paint it in it's original home.  Perhaps I will attempt another painting here before the barn is dismantled. 

I am happy that this painting sold at the Saturday night Art Association Soiree.

Saturday, August 1, 2015


I will be one of the featured artists in the August 8 "soiree", a garden party benefitting the Art Association of Harrisburg and held at the Huck residence, 86 Foxfire Lane, Lewisberry.  I'll be showing my newest paintings - many of which I've posted here.  Tickets are available in advance through the Art Association, or at the door.   www.artassocofhbg.com

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Between The Buildings

10x8 oil

Enjoying this great weather!
On Thursday I painted in the little town of Boiling Springs.  I thought perhaps I'd do a street scene, or one of the charming houses - but sometimes I find the space in between the buildings more interesting than the buildings themselves.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Little Pink Charmer

9x12 oil

I found this pink house in Liverpool.  I was attracted to the strong sunlight on the house and the variations in pinks - including the reflected glow under the porch roof.
The entire time I was painting I had that John Mellencamp song going through my head "Ain't that America...little pink houses for you and me".  With the sunflowers, the flag, this seemed like the quintessential small town charmer.

Saturday, July 11, 2015



Painted from a familiar intersection in the Bowmansdale area of Mechanicsburg.
The old stone tavern is charming but I was particularly interested in the way the road dives under the bridge, and the deep shadow under it.

Saturday, July 4, 2015

8x10 oil

Found a train yard yesterday with some newly restored vintage train cars.
Fun color in this caboose!

Friday, July 3, 2015

Wrightsville Bridge

11x14 oil

This has been a fantastic week for painting!  The weather's been great and I am in between jobs so I've had the luxury of painting every day - sometimes twice a day.
Here is another one from this week,  painted in Wrightsville after the heavy rain.
Clear sky - muddy river.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Hopper Moment

9x12 oil

I've been scoping out these houses in my neighborhood - just plain old row houses - but every evening there is this magical Edward Hopper moment.

Sunday, June 28, 2015


10x8 oil

Yesterday's rain left us with a pleasant Sunday - cool and low humidity - and also a lot of water!  The birds enjoyed splashing around in these puddles as much as I enjoyed painting them.  They were putting on a show for me!

Saturday, June 27, 2015


8x10 oil

Friday was an unexpectedly beautiful day.  I wanted to take advantage since we are expected to have a rainy weekend. 
Once again I visited the Boyers' lovely garden.  There are a few lilies blooming, and I chose to focus on these vibrant peach flowers.  By next week many more of the lilies will be blooming - if the rain doesn't damage them.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

The Artist's Studio

The Harrisburg Symphony Showhouse ended last weekend and was a great success.  This is the room I decorated, the Artist's Studio.  I painted the walls, floor, and most of the furnishings.  The idea was to create a venue to display my oil paintings, but to also decorate the room, not just hang paintings like a gallery.  I wanted it to feel like a true working space. Visitors loved the light feeling in the room and were especially delighted in the floor.  I sold 20 paintings, several objects, and picked up a few new clients.  Overall a great success, and a fun project!


10x8 oil

Finished a client job yesterday... so (as is becoming my treat to myself for a job well done) I took the day off to paint for myself.  
Some neighbors of a friend have extended an open invitation to artists to paint in their gardens and I took advantage of the opportunity.  I chose to focus on these flowers, which I thought were larkspur, but found out through some friends are called Campanula, or "Ladybells".

This garden is full of possibilities for painting - a plein air haven.  I plan to visit next week when, hopefully, the lilies will be blooming.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Painting The Alley - Fredrick Quick Draw

8x10 oil

Today I participated in the Quick Draw competition in Fredrick, MD.
I was set up and all ready to paint the alley when artist Stephen Doherty set up in front of me, so I added him to my composition.
Two hours is not much time to complete a painting - especially with figures - but I gave it a go.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Side Yard With A View

8x8 oil

The collector who purchase one of my paintings from Plein Air Camp Hill told me of a property he owned on Front Street in Wormleysburg.  He suggested I stop by and take a look, perhaps do a painting, told me to park in the back and walk around the side of the building.  I was delighted to find this amazing view directly across the river rom the capital.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Blushing Beauties

This was painted last weekend at Lindenwood, the Harrisburg Symphony Showhouse.  The roses and many other flowers are in bloom now and the gardens are lovely.  "Blushing Beauties" will be available in the Susquehanna Valley Plein Air Painters gallery in the showhouse barn.

8x10 oil

This is the final week to visit the showhouse, open every day 10-4 and Thursday until 8 PM.  Directions and other information can be found at http://www.harrisburgsymphonyshowhouse.org

Monday, June 1, 2015

Dappled Alley

9x12 oil

Here's another Camp Hill alley that I painted as part of the plein air event this past week.  This painting was purchased during the Friday night preview party.

Saturday, May 30, 2015

St. John's Alley

9x12 oil

It was a beautiful sunny morning for the Quick Draw event at Plein Air Camp Hill.
This view of St. John's Alley was painted in under 2 hours and sold in 2 minutes.

If you would like to see more of my work please visit my website www.julieriker.com

Monday, May 25, 2015

A Cool Corner by Julie Riker

8x10 oil

This was painted on Saturday at Lindenwood, site of the Harrisburg Symphony Showhouse, in the relaxing and colorful garden behind the outbuildings.  I was interested in the greenish/yellow glow on the white building, reflected off of the grass and plants.

This painting is available in the Susquehanna Valley Plein Air Painters gallery which is located in the upper level of the barn.  There is no charge to visit the barn and explore the showhouse grounds.
Entrance to the house is $20.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Lindenwood - Harrisburg Symphony Showhouse opens!!

16x20 oil

The Harrisburg Symphony Showhouse will open this Thursday night 5/21 with a special preview party and tour.  It officially opens to the public on Friday the 22nd and runs through June 14.
This has been a big but very rewarding project for me.  In addition to creating the painting above which is being used for promotional materials,  I've also taken a space on the third floor and created an artist's studio.  

If you are able to visit you will enjoy.  There is plenty to see - from the landscaped grounds, designer rooms, boutique, cafe -- Susquehanna Valley Plein Air Painters will be painting on the weekends and exhibiting work in the barn.  

For more information visit 

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Fields, Late Afternoon

8x10 oil

Just getting around to posting this painting that I did last weekend as a demo during the Art Center benefit at Hershey Vineyards... a beautiful view from their deck looking out over the Pennsylvania fields.  I enjoyed chatting with patrons and sampling wine as I painted...fun time!

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Pink Explosion

I've noticed the last few days that all the cherry trees are beginning to shed their petals.  This particular grouping of trees caught my eye in a neighborhood where I was doing some painting for a client.  The trees were growing on a mulched hill and the effect of the petals laying on the ground was amazing - like a carpet of pink.  Surreal.

I experimented a bit with this painting, using a palette knife to lay in some thicker patches of paint.  
Here is my painting.

Pink Explosion
8x8 oil

Friday, May 1, 2015

Showhouse News in "The Burg"

Thanks to Lori Myers for this nice article in the May/June issue of The Burg which describes my room at the upcoming Harrisburg Symphony Showhouse.


Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Painting Chairs

These stripped down plank bottom chairs were a great find at $30 each.  I've restored the paint surface  by researching similar chairs for my design.

I'll be placing these chairs in my room at the Harrisburg Symphony Showhouse which opens to the public on May 22nd.  The showhouse is in an 1860's stone farmhouse and I feel these chairs are appropriate to the period of the house.

 I love creating old and worn finishes - so much character!

If you would like to see more of my work please visit my website www.julieriker.com

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Back Alley Forsythia

8x10 oil

It felt great to be out painting on this warm spring afternoon!

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Harrisburg Symphony Showhouse: Progress Report

This it the room I am decorating for the Harrisburg Symphony Showhouse, which will be open to the public from May 22 - June 14.
I plan to turn it into an artist's studio and fill it with many of my paintings.

Work began a few weeks ago and so far I have painted the floor and started texturing the walls.
I am really loving this room.  The afternoon light is beautiful!  Perhaps once the easel comes in I will do some paintings in this room during showhouse hours.

For more information on the showhouse visit http://www.harrisburgsymphonyshowhouse.org

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

The Still Life

 I am eager for outdoor painting weather but still not ready to venture outside.  The past week I have dedicated some days to practicing the still life in my studio.  I am working directly from a live setup (no photo) and completing each painting in one sitting.  My subject matter all came from a trip to the grocery store.  The tulips were a delight to have in the house and made their way into several paintings before they wilted.  Here are two of them.


Tulips and Tapestry

Pink Tulips and Grapefruit

Friday, March 13, 2015

Empty House

oil on panel

I painted both Saturday and Sunday at the Empty House Tour for the Harrisburg Symphony Showhouse.  On Saturday I did the winter scene looking out the window, but for Sunday I decided to turn my easel around and paint the interior of the living room looking in to the hallway and library.  I don't usually paint interior scenes and I enjoyed it.

There were over 300 visitors to the house over the weekend - people anxious to get a sneak peek before the designers starting working.  I had set some of my paintings around on window sills and mantles to make the house not look so "empty" and was thrilled that 6 paintings sold over the 2 days...including this little one wet off the easel!

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Winter Shadows

Winter Shadows

Last weekend I had the opportunity to paint at the future Harrisburg Symphony Showhouse for their Empty House Tour.  The house was open for the public to see before the designers worked their magic.  I painted in the light filled sunroom surrounded by windows and view of snow covered fields...much warmer than painting outside.

The Harrisburg Symphony Showhouse will run from May 22 through June 14.  More information is on their website http://www.harrisburgsymphonyshowhouse.org

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Good Day PA

I did a live painting on TV!!

I was on Good Day PA with Amy Kehm helping to promote this year's Camp Hill Plein Air event and did a painting during the hour long show.
The producers showed several teasers with stages of my painting throughout the show.
There was a short interview discussing the plein air event.
You can view it here