New Pear Painting

Not yet titled (suggestions welcome!), 8×10 in, oil on canvas, not yet available.

I’m so happy with how this turned out! I’m hanging onto it so I can reflect on what I like while I’m painting tomorrow…

And here’s my little setup. I’m using construction paper for some color in the background.

On a side note, you can see that everything is on a table. I set it up that way so that it would be easy to film for my workshops. But my goal for this year is to get green and healthy, and I feel healthier standing up! So I’ll be making a setup that’s at eye level while standing and adjusting my workshop filming stuff accordingly.

Have a great day!

Getting Green in ’23

This year one of my big goals is to get my studio green, for my health and to be a good steward of the Earth.

The first thing I looked into is my use of solvents. I’ve been using a pretty limited quantity of Gamsol for a few years, for wash-ins and for brush cleaning. Right now I’m testing out Eco-Solve as a replacement, and my experience is mixed. It seems to work better as a brush cleaner, and I’ve improved my brush care as a result. But I’m not quite sure how I feel about it for a wash-in / map-in on canvas. It has an oilier feel to it.

Gamsol’s website says “Gamsol is the safest solvent that allows oil painters to utilize all traditional painting techniques without compromise.”

The label says “Vapor Harmful”.

Eco-solve’s website says “Made with processed soy bean oil. Non-Toxic:100% natural. Tested by professional toxicologists. Does not emit harmful vapors. Does not irritate the skin. Does not pollute the soil or waterways.”

It also says archival and non-yellowing, which are absolute musts for any painting materials I use. So I’m going to keep using it.

If you’d like to try it, here’s a link to a $5 off coupon. (That’s an affiliate link.)

There is a new Artist Spotlight on Outdoor Painter, on guess who!

My newsletter subscribers saw the behind the scenes story about this…

Here’s the article! (You can also find it here:…)

Jessie, shown helping to hang her solo exhibit at Johnson Fine Arts Center in SD

How did you get started and then develop your career?
Jessie Rasche: 15 years ago I became a professional fine artist, starting with tiny still life paintings and 6×6” paintings of moms and babies bonding. I painted moms from all around the country, some of whom came back years later for more portraits.

After I got more confident and my work grew, I focused intensely for 2 years on a series exploring how animal groups are both connected and individuals. Through that experience, I learned a lot about how to define a series, paint it, save the paintings for a show, and make show proposals It was so satisfying for all that effort to culminate in several beautiful solo exhibits.

When covid started, I wanted to give something meaningful to my fans, so I started a series of live youtube draw-togethers for restless home-bound people. It was a great experience, so I started teaching zoom painting workshops for artists. I’ve found that I love teaching, and my students are amazing.

Now I paint landscapes, people, and animals outdoors and in the studio. My work sells through my studio and great galleries, and I teach live online workshops to beginning – advanced artists.

How did you develop your unique style?
Jessie Rasche: My mom is an artist and I was exposed to the creative person’s lifestyle and encouraged in my creative endeavors throughout my childhood. I went to art school 30 years ago and have taken many workshops with fantastic artists since then. I feel very lucky to have had that start with art making.

I think we’re all born with a style, but although some of that style is evident right from the start, for me at least, it is a life-long journey to developing the skills and personal insight to let my style be fully realized.

My paintings are each anchored in gesture, with a combination of abstract and representational areas, a strong color theme, and layers of visible interesting marks.

For each of those elements in my work, I’ve dedicated a year (or several) to focusing on developing that skill. Right now, I’m very focused on mark-making and layering paint.

I try to make each painting the strongest one I have painted yet, and plan to keep developing my work in that way.

Thanks for this opportunity to share my art journey!

To see more of Jessie’s work, visit:

Stay up to date with Jessie through her newsletter.

Jessie Rasche, “Opening,” oil, 9 x 12 in., won “Best of Quarry”, 2021 AIS national exhibit wet wall competition
Jessie Rasche, “New Friend,” oil on panel, 16 x 12in., 2021
Hi, I just wanted to share something that for me is one of the most important art ideas – in case you find it helpful, too.It’s simple – in that moment where you decide you are excited enough about a subject to paint it, write down the thing of interest. 

Sometimes I write a word or two on my palette or on my scratch paper. Invariably my work comes out stronger when I do this, and even if I don’t look at that word, the act of having written it down will keep that thing in the painting, somehow. 

My word is usually something like “light” “shadow” or “ambiguity”. 

Is this something you’ll try? 
Happy painting! 

BTW, I have two great workshops enrolling right now – Oil Painting Basics, and Impressionist Painting with Jessie

The next morning I went to a group painting location at the break of dawn. I had my first experience hiking a couple miles on a trail with all my painting equipment. 

I had prepared for hiking by cannibalizing an old backpack to put comfy straps on my french easel, and organizing my bag pretty well.

It was a beautiful, peaceful state park, and the birds were singing and the trail followed a small river. My painting didn’t get far enough to share, but the experience was great.

I packed up by 9:30 or 10 am, before any other artists even got there, and went to the afternoon group spot at Sugarloaf cove. A nice 1/2 mile hike down to a gorgeous scene, and I could imagine painting in this one place all week next year.

I felt like I’d turned a corner. I think some people will look at this painting and think it’s not much because it’s so loose and abstract and messy… But I love it because it has thick and thin paint, a variety of brush marks, and a nice color harmony… 

Plein air adventure, day 3

On the third day of this plein air adventure I’m on, I went down to Bay Point in Red Wing, MN, at sunrise to start a new painting. 

On the walk to set up, the sweetest big dog greeted me. I’ve been missing my dog, and having this girl wag her tail and lean against me was so nice! 

Then while I painted, a number of people came by to check my progress a few times. It was such a joyful place to paint. 

I was drawn to this boat, and worked on the painting for a couple hours before the early morning light changed into a midmorning light (and then came back first thing the next morning to finish it).

And then, with the mid-morning light, I moved over to work on the boathouses below.  

Returning again and again…

bay point boat houses red wing mn

On the second day of the plein air event, in the late morning, I set up by this scene. I painted for several hours, and then the light changed too much to go on. The next morning I got up at 5 am to catch the morning light in a different painting, and then in the late morning went back to work on this panting – and kept working on it as my temp gage climbed up to 104′, but stopped again when the sun moved behind me. And then the following day I did the same. So this is officially the first plein air painting I’ve worked on for three days in a row.

Best Wishes,


Green Door at Bay Point Park, oil on linen, 9×12″, available at Red Wing Arts

bay point boat houses red wing mn

Painting the view at Frontenac State Park, MN

I’m on quite a plein air (painting outside) journey right now!

Last Friday afternoon I drove about 5 hours to a town I’d never seen before, to participate in a plein air event as a “Featured Class Artist”.

It’s been really wonderful. I’ve been staying with a delightful woman, and painting all day, every day…

Even on the day when it was over 100′. So much painting!!

It’s such a gorgeous area, choosing where to paint has been it’s own challenge.

This is the first painting I finished. The water here really is violet in the afternoon light.

Adventure in the Badlands

May 31, 2022 I drove over to Badlands National Park in South Dakota pretty early, so I could pull over for photos as often as I wanted on the way (which was pretty often) and still get to the badlands in time to look around. 

The north half of the park had the bighorns and deer and the teeth-like rocky structures that the park is known for, and the south half of the park had bison and emense rolling rocky grasslands, cut away with rocky ravines.

I got to the park early enough to drive all the way through before heading over to the town of Interior (population 94) to check in at my airb&b sleeping arrangements, and still get back to see if the sunset would be visible through the clouds. It wasn’t, but it was magical anyways. Don’t these bighorns look beautiful in the last light? 

I stayed overnight in a very rustic cabin without electricity or wifi, way off the beaten path. The kid (maybe 10 years old) who gave me directions from the main house out to the cabin was adorably professional.

I slept sparsely and restlessly, and got up at 4:30 am to get back to the park in time for the sunrise. I’d planned ahead with some much needed gas station coffee in the car. 

I only saw a few humans out and about, mostly professional looking photographers. But the park was full of singing birds, some fluffy beautiful deer, molting bighorn sheep and bison… 

I have about 500 photos – many of which I can’t wait to paint from!