Monday, February 17, 2014

February 17, 2014

Another day of wind, but not quite as bad a wind as yesterday's was.  I was about to head out this morning when I realized that I was almost out of toned panels.  I had toned about half of the 120 that I purchased, and now was close to running short.  For what I'm doing this month, I like a dried, neutral toned surface to work into.  It saves the need to get the 'white' covered, it already is by the tone, and it means that I can scumble or apply direct color and any white showing isn't an eye sore.  I use Raw Umber and French Ultramarine Blue, and OMS, to do this.  Apply a wash of it, wipe it with a rag, then put them in the horizontal drying rack.  A rack that my friend and fellow non-stop, very good plein air painter... Rene Plein Air... kindly sent me.  It works Great!

At this point, every day begins with the challenge of 'what to paint?'.  I am not traveling to do this project, I paint in my neighborhood.  I haven't even traveled as far as Boulder, only about 8 miles away, to paint.  One of my goals in doing these kind of intense projects is to find out what I know about where I live, in my hood, and what the possibilities are for interpreting it with paint.  If I get in the van and head out all over Colorado, it's defeating my reason for doing this.  But... at times it's hard to see the possibilities near me.  Especially when the weather is 'blahhh'.

Today it started as blahhh... and before long the wind was an issue.   I decided that it was going to be hard to finesse a painting at all while being battered by the wind's irritating banging on my panel holder, again.  What to do?  First thing was to find somewhere to paint that wasn't as affected by the wind... my choice... Roosevelt Park... in the heart of downtown Longmont.  Okay, so it's a city park, not the most organic of places to paint.  But... it's surrounded by an older neighborhood, and it had a rose garden, albeit not real nice looking right now.

Location solved... My solution was to give myself a challenge.

These things I do, like switching up palettes, and today's challenge, are only taken on for my own education and advancement.  I'm not sure that they're good things for anyone to do, but I find that giving myself a job to do out there is an advantage for me and my growth as a painter.

I decided to set a time limit for my paintings today... thank goodness for iPhones.  I set a 30 minute time limit for each painting.  I started the timer, began painting, and when the horn went off, I put the brushes down.  These paintings are raw, only showing what I could do in the 30 minute time frame.  But what it showed me is so much more valuable than spending the day doing them.  It's an exercise in being in a place and finding a subject to paint, in making decisions without dilly dally, in getting to the big picture,  in putting down the essentials, and in being able to stop at the end of the painting period.  They're not completed paintings, they're quick impressions, but they're all very honest and accurate notes about what I was seeing out there today.  I painted 4 in Roosevelt Park in Longmont, then headed out into the country, where I thought the wind had died down (it hadn't), and painted 4 more.

Saw a nice fox and a rough legged hawk on a kill today... and a nice lady who thought it was nice to see "A Thomas Kinkade painting in their park!". :)

Thanks for stopping in... Enjoy!

2-17-1 "30 Mins #1"
Oil - 8x10

2-17-2 "Winter Rose Garden"
Oil - 8x10

2-17-3 "Roosevelt Park"
Oil - 8x10

2-17-4 "Winter Rose Garden #2"
Oil - 8x10

2-17-5 "Behind An Old Fence"
Oil - 8x10

2-17-6 "Flood Victims"
Oil - 8x10

2-17-7 "Hawk's Perch"
Oil - 8x10

2-17-8 "Ending"
Oil - 8x10


Mary Pyche said...

Thank you so much, you are such an inspiration. I need all the motivation I can get. You remind me of Hibbard in that you get out there and brave the elements so often.

Carole Pivarnik said...

Great write-up and paintings! It occurred to me that you would have enough material from this month's worth of blog posts and paintings to put together a very nice, useful, and inspiring book when all is said and done! I'd buy it if it was reasonably priced!

Jo Castillo said...

I, too, love your stories, hints and conversations. It is such inspiration to follow along. I like visiting with the folks when I paint, too. Which do I like more, painting or talking? Ha. Anyway, thanks for taking the time to share the adventure with us.