About the Artwork

Originally inspired by classical after-the-hunt scenes, my recent paintings include a sentient animal gazing at the viewer. These animals are witnesses to modern life. They may live with the objects, but they have a different relationship to them; raising questions about our collections of stuff, our future, and our feelings about animals. By using a classical style, the common objects can be viewed through a lens of history. 

Because humans invade or destroy wildlife habitat, I wanted to let wildlife into our spaces. To get attention. The animals then became actors in a scene devoid of humans in slightly sci-fi world. In my “Variant World” series (entitled before Covid-19), I was wondering what the place would be like without humans, and definitely with climate change on my mind. These paintings are more personal and less real. My recent political cartooning hobby, has helped me break from strict realism. Some of the furniture is from childhood memories. It’s odd that this series was completed before the pandemic, yet it certainly matches the sense of how I am feeling these days.

After a thumbnail sketch, I start directly on canvas with a brush. I work from life and in natural light, if possible. I welcome distortions that seep into the work; I am not a camera. Works are concepted in series, each of which may span several years. I am a life-time student of nature: painting plein air landscapes, and drawing from life.


I grew up in Larchmont, New York. After attending SUNY College at New Paltz, I received my BFA in painting from the University of Colorado. I love to visit museums to study directly from the masters. I've exhibited at various bay area galleries, in many local and national juried competitions and my work is housed in corporate and private collections. I have taught art, design, and software, both privately, at Expression College, Bay Area Video Coalition, and at San Francisco City College Extension. I live in the Goodman 2 Art Center.


My sister, Jeanne, taught me to draw and paint horses. At age seven, my mother gave me a set of oil paints and canvas boards and told me to go paint in the basement when I woke up early. At age eight, my best friend, Mary Ann Wolf, and I started The Little Artists Club. The club had only two members but it had a fancy art opening with cookies in Mary's basement.

My mother, Jeanne, and I, spent a summer on a grand tour of Europe, visiting many museums starting with the Louvre. College art history classes later invoked vivid memories of the original works. Other influences are Charles Addams, New Yorker cartoonists, Mad Magazine, and Eloise.

Directions to the Studio

My painting studio at Hunter's Point Naval Shipyard is open by appointment.
The studio is in Building 101, Studio 1223, in the middle on the ground floor, behind the flagpole.

GPS: 451 Galvez Avenue, San Francisco

Google maps: link >>click here

Driving: From Highway 280 or 101 in San Francisco, exit at Cesar Chavez East. Turn South on Evans Street. Stay on Evans for 2 miles. (The street changes name to Innes St.) Keep left toward water. At the guardhouse, please state that you are visiting Crampton in Building 101-1223. The studio is next to the main door, on the first floor.

Bus: The Shipyard is served by Muni #19 Polk bus. The studio is handicap accessible.


Just to make life more interesting, I play in two gigging rock bands and was a founding member of two seminal punk (or post-punk bands) in the late 1970's. Click here for more on my music exploits.


Carolyn working on a still life.

Crampton working on "Still life with Iris and Snoopa" in 2014.

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map to studio

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