Thursday, July 11, 2013

Five Summer Pieces

At Gloucester Harbor, Oil on Canvas, 16x20 
The painting to the left was actually begun last summer on location in Gloucester, MA, and had been hiding in my studio, incubating.  After applying retouch varnish to get the surface receptive to new paint, I started in on deepening the contrasts.  I think the painting gained from further application of paint.  I put the painting out where I must see it on a daily basis.  Slowly it is suggesting other refinements, perhaps another addition.  I must be careful; one can easily be seduced from the initial simplicity of the painting and, as a consequence, spoil a particular mood inherent to the piece!

At Dutch Harbor, Oil on Canvas, 11x14
 This next painting is much more recent and is fresh from the outdoors!  Evening was beginning its descent into the harbor on Jamestown and the sun with the touch of Midas, turned the white-hulled boats a mellow tone.  In the distance a farm also shared this solar blessing .  One can even see the creep of shadow up the piling in the left corner.  Dutch Harbor is indeed a magical place this time of day -- my favorite time of day, despite the brief painting time allowed before the sun has stolen away.

At Second Beach, Oil on Canvas, 8x10
 A third painting done in the last two weeks was this small one painted on an overcast day in Newport.  Second Beach is, of course , famous for its view of St. George's on the hill which lends a pastoral quality to the scene.  The ocean was a restless grey-green, and the life-guard posts were a bright blue.  These overcast day scenes are real challenges to the painter in making local color behave.  Local color is more obvious on such days but , still, objects must be made to recede with distance.

A Narragansett Afternoon, Oil on Linen, 9x12
The fourth painting was an effort to capture the glow of the sea as the light turns mellow in the company of the beach-goers.  There were several mind-based activities going on, the most prominent being the conversation of the two women.  A third person seems lost in her own world, perhaps mesmerized, as this artist was, with the light of the waning day.  Still others were occupied with finding treasure in the sand.  These people, elements in my composition were selected from many more lost in their own mini-worlds  on the beach at the time.  Selection.  It goes with our artistic license.

Jamestown, Oil on Canvas, 18x24
This last painting, again unfinished represents my personal celebration of a painting view not known to me before a week ago.  One comes to this at the end of a path just before the entrance to Beavertail, a frequent painting spot of mine.  This spot, I thought, really portrays the ruggedness of the shore that surrounds Conanicut Island.  The sun, beginning its descent in the west, was to the right of me.  As the light moved behind the cliff, shadows crept along the rocks .  The day was not entirely sunny as I've indicated with some clouds in the sky.  I find such "partly sunny days" a challenge to paint.  I'm returning to this spot soon!