Friday, June 22, 2012

Simple is Better

I need to qualify that title. Simple is better when you have twenty minutes to capture the fleeting light. I have a growing number of trees in my back yard. (Pun intended). We keep planting them and they keep growing. So the character of our green space changes year after year. The willow trees are growing particularly fast. Maples dominate, with their large attractive leaves and hearty root systems. Their majestic limbs will provide shade for many years to come. This is a young maple tree that was planted around eight years ago. It's a popular destination for the local birds who can scope out the bird bath prior to zooming in for a drink.

June has been dry and the grass is hard and crunchy beneath my bare feet. The soft green blades of spring have disappeared with the drought and we're offered a glimpse of August. The sun was setting when I began this painting and I had just twenty minutes to capture the scene. The honeysuckle grows up and out behind the birdbath and the edges of leaves are turned to shades of molten gold. The abstract forms of shadows and shapes is mysterious and I use a loaded brush full of silvery blue to paint the darkening sky into the background.

Painting is like poetry when you get it right.

5 x 7"
oil on gessoed masonite

I won't be around next week. I'm taking my annual trip with several other artists to a new painting place in northern Michigan. Hope to have many new pieces to share when I return.

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