Sunday, January 10, 2010

Lake of the Woods-plein air, alla prima, Florida landscape

"Lake of the Woods", 12x9, oil on canvas

I painted this little study of a lake in my neighborhood recently, before the weather turned bitterly cold! We Floridians do some physical adapting when we move down to Florida from the north- our bodies learn how to shed heat effectively so that we can better deal with the hot subtropical climate. Unfortunately, when we get cold snaps like the present one, our bodies are less able to adjust. I have been wanting to do some plein air painting, but it looks as though this week is going to be another rough one for my thin skin!

The above painting was done in pure color with a palette knife only. This is definitely one of those impressionist paintings that makes absolutely no sense until you step backwards a few yards! I made the reddish/pink roof the focal point in what was otherwise a low contrast painting that was done in mostly mid value range and used color to turn the planes. I finished it in the one hour and although the light had already changed from when I arrived, I made certain not to meddle with the first notes and that way I kept out of trouble. When I got home I wanted to work it some more in order to refine the shapes and details, but I resisted the temptation in order to keep the freshness and spontaneity of the alla prima painting. So I signed it and called it done. I'm looking forward to more plein air painting in warmer days to come!

Here was the scene that I painted in my southwest Florida neighborhood:

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Candy Barr said...

Breathtaking colors~ Lovely! Tip on plein air in cold weather: cashmere socks and sweater...they keep you toastie with the layers~on maybe the warm colors are heating you up! It's working whatever.

Pattie Wall said...

Hi Maryanne, It's understandable that this winter there are places that have experienced some cold that they aren't used to. We have had a different winter here too, very cold! My first stop by, I will be back, to check out more of your paintings. I love these paintings with heavy palette knife work and the colors on this one are outstanding!