I’ve been busy with my show for the last few weeks framing and getting everything ready. If you live in the area it’s at the Art Place on Sandy Plains Rd. in Marietta till the end of August..
This last weekend I was up early both mornings to get out before family commitments. It works out very well with a few paintings that have that summer morning feel and a lot atmosphere. The first is a river scene painted over near a spot I’ve painted quite a bit before. Last time I noticed this view only a few hundred feet from the park entrance. I had to set up on the road so I was dodging cars while stepping back to get a look the whole time. The color here is very close to the real thing and the greens are a real challenge. Water and reflections are always impressive to viewers and I do an OK job on it. Over the years I’ve learned to go with the direct reflection of the view —just a mirror image and then ad some surface with objects or ripple reflections. I rough it in and then use a big brush to pull straight up or down. It’s a bit of a trick but when water is very calm it’s accurate. When the wind picks up though it reflects off the sky and this is much harder and less interesting as a rule. So I stick with the mirror image unless I’m painting the rough ocean. Again this sort of image is right in the majorities wheelhouse and I got a lot of good reactions from passer-byes. In the end, it’s the L shape composition and the distant levels that make this work.
Sunday I was up early again and drove to an industrial park off old Highway 41 in Marietta. This is a spot that features a rail yard and the backs of old warehouses crowded with equipment and interesting junk. I like this sort of thing and I’ve been here twice in the last month. The first time I did a view of the rail yard that just did not work and another of a loading dock that I thought was dynamic but ended up with very little punch. This time I centered a view on the railroad crossing and the tree near it that because of the trimming had a very triangular shape—almost like a bookend. This worked well and enhanced the contrast of the early morning greens and the closer darker tree. I finished up with some power lines knifed in that reenforced the composition. After this, I stopped a close-by diner for some lunch. Real southern food—not very good for you, but good! Chicken fried steak, coleslaw, collards, and cornbread. On my way out I spotted this old Chevy truck and a smoker they were using. So I set up and did a little portrait.