Saturday, January 11, 2014

These Unpainterly Times

The abstract-looking mess to the left is an image of an oil sketch I had done yesterday.  It was intended to be a snow study in a park -- you can see that the dark lines represent trees-- but it began to rain!  The small board, about 8 x 10 in in size was fastened to a clip board.  The rain etched its way into the oil sketch in small rivulets , cutting through the block-in I was furiously attempting.  I did admire the etched tangles; if I followed their courses with some fine brushing of an orange- and transparent oxide red, I would have a richly-vined scene reminiscent of a forest interior or at least a thicket.  When I considered the piece in the comfort of the studio, however, I wanted to follow my original intent of showing the majesty of these trees and their soft shadows on the new carpet of snow.

The short-Lived Snow, Oil on Board, 8 x 10
The picture on the left is actually the same board (dried) and worked upon in the studio using memory and a little "artistic license".  One can see in both the original rain-etched abstract as well as the painting on the left, the indication of a stone wall marking the edge of the field.  Also, the placement of the trees is essentially the same.  The additions, not noted in the original is the winding path and the figures in the distance (on the left).    It is always good to work up the studio painting not long after the original plein-air sketch so that the scene is recognizable by people living in the area-- at least that is often my intention.
Here, one correction I will make is the sky.  The color in the original sketch is truer-- less blue, more lavender.

                                                                   As painters, we must forge ahead regardless of the vicissitudes of the New England weather! 

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