Oil Paintings by Donna S Schaffer

Wine Country Landscape Painting Link

Wine Country Landscape Paintings

Underwater Paintings Link

Marine Life Oil Paintings

Donna Schaffer with Shadow Selfie

California Butterfly Oil Paintings

California Flora Paintings Link

California Flora Oil Paintings


Donna Schaffer's Artist Biography

Art has been a main thread throughout Donna Schaffer's life. It wove through 20+ years of advertising agency and photojournalism experience and resulted in the development of her personal dimension of oil painting - especially in the painting of incredible natural environments - the flora of Northern California; and the undersea world of marine life. This connecting thread of art has made her very aware of the color and light in the worlds around her.

Schaffer has lived amongst the wine country vineyards since 1990. She said, "How could I not be a painter? This is truly an amazing area with the vineyards, the forests, the lakes and not far from the ocean. Each sunrise and sunset takes your breath away". Click here and to see images of her current vineyard landscape paintings.

"Sometimes I feel like I should've been a botantist or biologist instead of a fine arts oil painter", says Schaffer. She says she is always searching to find information about her flora or fauna painting subjects. What are their habits? What are their lifespans? Where all can they be found? Shes says her passion for the scientific knowledge increases the familiarity of each subject.

Rainbow Starfish

A diver since college, Schaffer's done lots of dives from Mendocino to the Monterey, plus, she's been all over the Caribbean and South Pacific to pursue scuba diving adventures. Each trip has added to the gigabites of reference images - A lifetime of marine life painting reference material!

Schaffer's marine life body of work endeavors to recreate the images, colors, and shadows of the undersea world as she has seen it. However, her paintings are not "copies" of her undersea photographs. She uses a painterly approach and make many adjustments and modifications such as the lighting intensity to counteract the effect of strobe lighting, or she removes the artificial light completely and give the painting an underwater feel where shadows are barely evident and contrast is low. And while she doesn't paint a "photorealism" style, the marine environments she creates are based on reality, she won't create a school of "pretty fish" in a species that never schools. She won't mix marine life from various oceans of the world into a setting that wouldn't occur.

oil painting of green anemones

The silver thread is that these paintings resonate. And with each dive she goes on, she has more material to paint! Visit the site at www.underwaterpaintings.com.

Picture of Donna

Schaffer spends most of each week plein air and/or studio painting. Her work is represented by the Upstairs Art Gallery, Healdsburg, California. Annually Schaffer participates in two Artist Open Studio events.
1. Sonoma County Art Trails, 2nd and 3rd weekends of October, at her home studio in Dry Creek Valley just outside Healdsburg, California
2. Monterey Open Studios Art Show, last weekend of September, at her second home studio in Pacific Grove, California.
Call her for directions!

Schaffer loves to hear from folks! Send her an email at dsscha@hotmail.com.

Underwater Paintings     Wine Country Landscapes


All Rights Reserved © 2003-2020 Donna S. Schaffer