Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Longpool Window

I did 2 paintings at Longpool in Arkansas; this is the afternoon painting. The morning painting was weaker and my excuse is that I was suffering from motion sickness after the windy backseat ride to this primo spot. This was my "window of well," as the trip back was worse and that evening was the only time that I didn't go out on the town with my peeps after painting :-(  But that was the night that I got to paint the cooling tower so it was not a total loss. This 8x10 was done in the shade on top of a cliff, looking through an opening to the longpool below. I was mostly in love with the sinewy arm of the tree trunk, twining down to the determined fingers of the roots that grabbed and clung to the side of the cliff. It reminded me of a strong old man.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Arkansas Nuclear One By Night

I have a hat. It's a ballcap that has flashlights in the bill. I'm not trying to make you jealous but there are 3 of them: click once and 2 crossbeams light up and point at your palette; click twice and a super beam points straight out in front of you, at your canvas; three times and all 3 are lit and you look like a real goober :-) I found out that the front beam is too bright to use for painting in the dark, it wrecks your night vision. Also, you need to really know your palette and what your colors will do when you mix them because the eye (at least my eye) is not very color-discerning in the dark. It's kind of funny, when you think of the subject matter, that only the rods are working. Get it? It's funny on a subatomic level. This painting is also very small: 5x7. With it, I've tried to show the beauty of that cooling tower at night.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Arkansas Nuclear One by Day

On our painting trip, we camped in the state park on Lake Dardanelle, directly across from the only nuclear power plant in the state. This is the view of the cooling tower from our site. It was endlessly fascinating to watch: sometimes the plume was small and acted like the vapor that pours from dry ice; sometimes it was a beautiful thick column of white that drifted to a graceful end at the top; other times it seemed to make its own clouds. It sort of reminded me of a vase that was filled with different flowers and every time I looked at it, I wanted to paint it. I got 2 very small (5x7) paintings done and a larger painting started, this being one of the small works.
The reflection of the plume was so clear in the foreground water but the more distant water was blown by the wind and did not offer the same clarity. I debated whether to show it as a constant reflection but elected to depict it as it actually was that day. I'll post the other one next~ thanks for visiting!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Pontoon Pier

I painted this in Arkansas one afternoon, standing on the shores of Lake Dardanelle. For awhile, two of my favorite peeps were with me but they finished up and took off. Soon after that, a group of people arrived, consisting of two couples and someones mom. They sashayed past the "No Fishing From Pier" sign with their fishing gear and proceeded to fish off the pier, right across from Arkansas Nuclear One cooling tower. I tell you, it made a great poster. Their colorful lawn chairs and the big red "no fishing" sign would have made a very nice painting. I hope you'll accept this painting as a suitable substitute, since it was nearing completion when the new painting arrived.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Rainy Petit Jean

One of our paint days in Arkansas was rainy. We were caravanning up to Petit Jean State Park, hoping for clearing, but twas not to be.
Protection was found in a great pavilion that had a rope across the entrance; very easy to step over. We set up our gear and had been painting for about 30-40 minutes when a park ranger happened by to see if we'd paid to be there. Not really good public relations. I won't tell you about how they charged us $50 for an hour and a half (by-the-half-day). I'll focus on the positive: it was truly beautiful, in a moody, meditative way. I tried to depict the feeling of the many trees, the changing season, and the water down below, without getting too busy with the forty-two billion leaves. I stood in the doorway of the building, listening to the rain on one side and the people I love talking on the other, my dog by my feet and a brush in my hand. It does not get much better than this.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Piney Point, Lake Dardanelle

I'm back from New York and ready to get to work, starting with this blog!
As far as I know, this piney point has no name, so I'm giving it one for free.
The painting is from our trip to Arkansas. Our vantage point was the headquarters of Dardanelle State Park; this is my morning painting. I was with 3 of my favorite people, 2 of whom painted nearly identical paintings from slightly different perspectives, and we weren't even cheating! The captivating thing for me was the way the early sun was lighting the sides of the trees on the point and the fall colors on the distant shore, while the actual point still rested in the shadows.