Friday, July 17, 2009

View from my garden-Plein air

"View from my garden"-11x14

I've been out of town much of the week, and I was very happy to find myself home again today with a typical southwest Florida blue sky to raise my spirits. (It rained all week, where I visited, and I have gotten used to blue skies 95% of the time, so I have a new understanding of people with SAD!)

Although I was able to paint the little "Here Comes the Sun" piece in a gloomy hotel room, I could not wait to get outside this morning, albeit the extreme heat and humidity I faced. I decided to paint in my back yard, where I'd have ample access to water (and a pool!) if things got too uncomfortable. This is the view looking north up the hill and past neighbor Steve's house, to the left. Within 15 minutes there was sweat pouring down my back and my cat Sabrina kept crying incessantly from behind the door of the caged lanai, probably unable to figure out why I had changed my painting location to the great outdoors, which is off limits to her.

The past few days gave me plenty of quiet time to think and read, and I read Kevin MacPherson's "Fill Your Oil Paintings with Light and Color" from cover to cover. Macpherson is one of my favorite impressionist painters, and I decided to take his advice and go with a limited palette today, which included only six colors, including white. I had no trouble mixing the various colors, my only problem is that I detest alizarin crimson, which is one of the colors he advocates. I stuck with it to the end though, and I do like the way the limited palette creates unity in this painting. I also incorporated brush work into this one, and just as he warned- there's a learning curve that occurs when you try to use a tool that you are less skilled with. I do like using both the brush and the palette knife, so I am going to keep at the brushwork. As far as painting plein air again in the near future- it's just too darned hot!

If you would like to purchase this painting, please contact Leah at Collector's Gallery and Framery for purchase info. Leah can be reached at (941)488-3029.

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