Friday, September 30, 2011

Cascade Lake

These are a few recently completed works reflecting the same composition. When they are hung next to each other they work really well together. The vibrant colors of the first work provide an energetic feeling, while the subtle grays and purples of the second work create a more subdued look. Someone recently remarked that these works are "simple yet complicated". I suppose I can see the simpleness in the naive unrefined qualities of the paintings, yet the hundreds of colors and shapes allow for a complicated feeling in the middle of this simplicity.

Cascade Lake #1 and #2 - 16x20" Acrylic on Panel

Saturday, September 17, 2011

The Broken Bridge

We spent our summer vacation in Cape Cod this year and stayed at our friend's house in Bourne. MA. A short walk from the house the broken bridge crosses over the inlet. This bridge has been there for over a hundred years, and at some point Grover Cleveland spent time here during his presidency.

Being the bridge was built from actual rocks the natural surfaces allowed me alot of expression in how I detailed the stones. My initial intention was to use heavy impasto work on the rocks and have them three dimensionally pop off the canvas. After painting the sky and water, I decided against this - I think my reasoning was the sunrise created a focal point and having something too abstract might deter from this.

Lately I've been doing alot of experimenting with clouds. I think the clouds in the broken bridge painting are my best effort so far. I did these by masking out several geometric shapes with tape. After this I painted the sky in hundreds of vertical bands that descended onto the sunrise. When I lifted the tape and began painting the clouds, I used the same colors as I did for the rest of the sky, but I used horizontal lines to contrast the vertical bands of the sky. This along with the white outlines provided good, but not overpowering definition for the clouds.

This work will soon be hanging at my friend's home on Cape Cod. I can now look forward to painting more works inspired by hundreds of pictures we took during our vacation.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Falls Lake - Limited Palette Study

I painted a picture a few years ago using just yellows, blacks and whites. I never really thought much of it, but it kept hanging around my studio. Too nice to throw out, but not really worthy of posting to my website or sending off to any shows. The painting shown is a new painting, but is based on the older work. The original photograph has long since disappeared, so this is a rare event where I worked from another painting rather than from a photo or en plein aire. I had alot of fun with this, it did not take me nearly as long as most of my work and being there was no photograph I did not concern myself compositional accuracy. Unlike the earlier work there are some dark blues present in the water. I think for my next study, I might try darks over lights.