Friday, December 20, 2019


THE MISTS of BIG SUR by Barry Allen Howard
9”x12” oil on canvas. $160

I was standing on the cliff-edge at my trusty, paint-splattered easel.  It was one of those mornings where the fog moves like some living, breathing mist-creature. The winter weather has brought some pretty stunning cloudscapes. I got most of the composition and the lights and darks established before the fog finally made up its mind and obliterated the view entirely. I packed up the easel and drove back to my tiny caravan. Built a cozy fire, made a cup of tea and continued work on the painting for the rest of the day. I always love watching the dance that the coastal mists do along the cliffs. This was really a fun painting to do. 
For inquiries about this painting please email me at or message me on Facebook. 
Thanks for following my blog!

Thursday, December 19, 2019


CHATEAU FIASCO. by Barry Allen Howard 
9”x12” oil on canvas. SOLD

For a long time I have wanted to begin a series of paintings of the historic Deetjens Big Sur Inn. My history with this unique inn goes back to the early 1980’s when I stopped in for breakfast on a road trip and ended up being hired on as a breakfast waiter. Deetjens is a place you have to experience to really understand. More than anywhere else it embodies the magic and mystique that is Big Sur. The guest cabin pictured below was staff housing when I worked there and after briefly living upstairs in  the restaurant in a tiny closet of a space known as the Piano Room, I moved into the Castro Canyon cabin painted below. I had a large piece of marble outside the cabin that I would chip away at when I wasn’t serving pancakes to the guests. These are the first two paintings of the Deetjens series. 

 CASTRO CANYON by Barry Allen Howard 
9”x12” oil on canvas

For inquiries about this painting please email me at
Thank you for following my blog!

Monday, December 16, 2019

THE PATH OF THE HEART and other questionable life choices...

Somebody's gotta do it...

The long dry summer finally gave way to winter rains. I am taking refuge in my tiny gypsy caravan.  It is perched on a ledge high above the vast Pacific Ocean. The wood stove is burning cheerily, making it warm and cozy. New paintings are taking shape on the easel. I have coffee, food, beer, firewood, and lots of art supplies. I feel wealthy. The highway is very quiet due to the rains and scattered rockslides and road closures. Peaceful, but not especially good for my bank balance as I sell much of my work to the visitors passing through.  I was warned about choosing this lifestyle. Didn't listen. Still don't. Romance of the artist's life and all that.  But I know I am not alone as I have other artist friends who have to pull some magic out of a hat to make it through the winter.  Somehow we survive to paint another day.
     When there is a break in the storms and the sun comes out I pack the French easel into my trusty van, "Pacifico" and head down to the cliffs to do some painting "en plein air".  On this particular morning, (see photo above) the world seemed washed clean by the recent rains and the sun felt especially good on my face.  I soaked up as much of it as I could for I know more rains are coming. The painting below is the result of that morning on the cliffs. 
A MORNING IN THE SUN by Barry Allen Howard
16"x20" oil on canvas
For inquiries about this painting please email me at
For the remainder of the year I am offering free shipping within the mainland U.S.
Thank you for following my blog! 

Saturday, August 24, 2019


Woke up to a beautiful Big Sur morning!  As I enjoyed the view over coffee I realized that it has been almost a year that I have been living in the tiny gypsy caravan, not to be confused with the VERY tiny gypsy caravan, (shown below)  that I pulled with my bike.

The tiny gypsy caravan that has been my home for the past year was given the name THE JEWEL BOX, by a neighbor.  I thought it was appropriate.  Living in it seems very much like living in a jewel box when the sun comes out.

It's pretty much an all-day light show inside...

Up here on the ridge, winters  can be pretty rowdy with lots of wind and rain. 

  Overall the Jewel Box held up well...a few leaks in the corners but they were minor and I will have them taken care of before winter comes around again.  I spent many days inside with the tiny woodstove cranked up keeping everything inside warm and dry while I worked on my small paintings at my easel.

So now summer is moving into fall.  One year of living in the Jewel Box and I love it so much.  Seems I am busier than ever these days...mostly painting my tiny oil paintings either here at home or, weather permitting, out along the Big Sur cliffs.  As seems appropriate with my love of tiny living, I am focussed mostly on very small paintings on Gessobord, 5"x7" and 6"x6".   So many things I love about working on tiny paintings...for one, I really enjoy how the paint works on the surface of the Gessobord.  It has a very fine tooth and is excellent for small details.  I also like the fact that I can complete them fairly quickly as it allows me to try lots of different things in a rather short amount of time. 

WATERFALL by Barry Allen Howard
6"x6" oil on Gessobord

MAGICAL NIGHT by Barry Allen Howard
5"x7" oil on Gessobord

miniature paintings in progress

 And the whole idea of it appeals to my basically nomadic nature...I could carry an entire art show around in a fanny pack.   I have just ordered some frames for the small paintings and plan to work on some framed three panel sets.  Stay tuned....I will be posting more on this in the not too distant future!  
Thank You for following my blog!

Saturday, June 22, 2019


FLYING DREAMS  by Barry Allen Howard.   Sold
I have been a busy fellow lately,  setting up my new website, dusting the cobwebs off of my blog and my Facebook page and getting back into the virtual world after a long hiatus. I have been living up on a ridge in Big Sur in my tiny gypsy caravan and painting a lot of new pieces. 

THE JEWEL BOX, my tiny home and art studio 
 As I now have internet that is more or less reliable I will be posting my newest Hot Off the Easel paintings as well as stories and updates on my tiny life in the gypsy caravan. 
You are invited to check out my new website here: 
where I will be posting my new work. If you would like my blog posts to come straight to you mailbox please subscribe. 
It was a wild winter up here on the ridge with lots of rain and high winds. As you can see in the picture I had to chain the caravan to the ground to keep it from blowing away. Summer has finally come and I haven’t had to fire up the wood stove for a while now. I am painting lots of new stuff and will be posting them regularly. Thank you for visiting my blog and my new website!