I love Labor Day. It’s at the end of a usually hot summer with the thrill of a bit of color other than green down the road. It’s also a very relaxed holiday with no gifts to buy, parades to go to, and minimal family commitments. It’s just a day off at the nicest time of the year.
Saturday morning I drove out to Ford Island State Park on the south shore of the Chattahoochee. It’s a nice park and has a lot of clear views up and down the river. I’ve been mesmerized by the water lately —and I was really thinking about doing a house portrait but for some reason just could not get away from it this weekend. I hiked down from the lodge ( a potential painting) to the dock near the river and set up around 9 AM – a bit too late as it turned out. The air was warming fast and the view lost all it’s atmosphere quickly. I’ve painted this view a few times so I decided to mix it up with a vertical. I’ve been having trouble with my lay-ins being too wet so I brought some thinner with me and mixed an earth tone using the thinner I roughed the river and trees in did a toned drawing or grasile. The thinner dries up much quicker and after about twenty minutes I was ready to put in the color. I’ve been using a lot of purpled greens in the background and I continued in that fashion with this painting. The impasto built up maybe a bit too much and later at home I leveled out quite a bit with a knife. The reflections upfront still ended up looking like rapids.
The spot where I set up got very busy as the day progressed with rafters and boat launches so I moved and set up above the landing and did a small 9 x12 of the dock. I think the angles and light on this one make it interesting. The boy on the dock and the orange canoe work as counters to all the greens. I finished up early around 2 pm before it got too hot and headed home.
Sunday morning I was up early again and ended up at my go-to location Mountain Park. I really should find somewhere else but it’s so close and…there’s water there! So I did a flat on the central view of the fishing shack across the lake that I have done three times before. This time I was interested in the fog that enveloped the view and even though I knew it would not last I attempted to capture it as much as I could. I ended up working on this for several hours at home afterward to ad those greys back in that had vanished before I could get them down.
Later I did a view of the fishing deck w/fisherman in the bright light with a very dark shaded lake house behind. The figure worked pretty good here but again I had to simplify this quite a bit after the fact. Finally, I did a small quick view across the lake on one of my mahogany boards.