Smith Family Farm

Atlanta History Center

This last weekend I drove down both Saturday and Sunday to the Atlanta History Center. This is the location of the Swan House, a magnificent neo-classical house designed and built in the early thirties. It features a huge cascading fountain in the front yard that ties the whole structure in the hillside. I’m not a fan of “neo” anything as a whole but this IS one romantically beautiful place and worth the trip alone.  And there is so much more to see and do. I painted a straight-on view of the house —sort of a homage. Not much in the way of composition but with the backlight the whole front was bathed in a wonderful reflective green glow of the grass.

Swan House
Swan House

In the afternoon I moved around to the back of the house for this view of a vintage Hudson sedan they park near the back entrance. I took a look inside and was amazed at the level of detail in the ceilings and a very graceful and romantic winding staircase. It would be a nice place to set up and do an interior.

Hudson at the Swan House
Hudson at the Swan House

On Sunday I painted a view of the Smith Family Farm which in its entirety has been relocated from an area outside of town. About six buildings including a quaint farmhouse, a dog trot barn, a slave cabin and more. I painted a view from the barn looking at the house. My wife has a thing for sheep so when I heard them baying all day Saturday I decided to make an effort to capture them in paint. This worked out well with an L shaped composition and key change from dark to light. The only problem I had was the lack of wool on the shorn sheep.

Smith Family Farm
Smith Family Farm

Later in the day, I wandered down into the gardens for this view of a small waterfall on the property. Not much water flowing and I think I took this about 40 minutes too far…sometimes I just can’t accept a quick effortless painting— just have to make it hard.

Bridge & Stream
Bridge & Stream

All this, and by the way they have a museum too!

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