This winter has given us record snow and rain in the Pacific Northwest and I have not been eager to go out to drive, play or paint plein air! Even bundled up, it's difficult to paint with frozen finger tips! But I have been inspired and found some lovely photos by Canadian photographer Bonnie Sitter which were the basis for the two first paintings. On a sunny day, I ventured out into the neighborhood with my camera and later painted the third painting. The snow is gone for now, but not the rain and clouds, and memories and inspiration persist.
In early December, I attended a monotype demonstration by artist Wliiiam Park, followed by a workshop and exhibition at OSA (Oregon Society of Artists). Materials were provided by Gamblin Paints, there was
paper, a press and everything needed to experiment in this medium, new for me. Dairy Creek was done in a two stage process. First the image was put down on plexiglass in black sticky ink, then rubbed and scraped away to reveal the white areas. A second layer of color was put down on top after running through the press. I used my favorites thalo blue and green. The cat in the window shows the first stage in black and white. Later I added a bit of red and yellow to suggest the lights outside. It is now the property of the office manager at OSA, hope she enjoys it!
On a beautiful Fall day a few days ago, I went to paint plein air at one of my favorite paces, Powell Butte Nature Park. From that height, Mt. Hood, Mt. St. Helens and other mountains in the Cascade range are visible on a clear day. I painted on a square to focus on Mt. Hood, bright against a blue sky.
At the visitor center, there is a quote from John Muir: "Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in, where Nature may heal and give strength to body and soul." I hope that my paintings will capture some of that healing beauty we all receive from Nature.
Continuing daily painting past October pumpkins. There are still some trees with leaves although most have fallen on their last journey to the earth. I look for rich colors, no matter the weather. Daily painting is a commitment and expense, so sometimes I paint on tiny 4" x 4" boards, or watercolor or colored pencil on paper. Is this good practice or am I a glutton for punishment? All are posted on Facebook on #paintingoctober and #paintingnovember, the failed experiments as well as the good. These are three I like.
I've been painting daily all through October and posting on Facebook on Painting October (Daily Challenge), finding time every day even if it's a quick study. The challenge is sponsored by Muse Art and Design, my favorite neighborhood supply store, maybe I'll win something if I complete the challenge! Sometimes I procrastinate on painting a still life and the flowers wilt and the fruit gets eaten, but because of this commitment, I'm motivated! Painting inside on a gray, rainy day from a real scene in my home or a photo on the computer, is a change from painting outside. When the weather allows, I get out to paint plein air, hoping to capture the Fall colors before they fade and blow away.