Monday, April 12, 2010

Paintout Monday!

What a great day in the Fredericksburg, TX area! We drove the Willow City Loop and threw caution to the wind in spite of warnings not to stop along the road. We stopped at nearly every turn, took hundreds of photos and absorbed as much of the beauty as we could. Once I get them sorted I'll post my favorites on my facebook page.

After that we made our way to the ranch (many thanks to the Cunninghams!), indulged in a quick picnic lunch, scared off the rattlesnake and proceeded to paint. After warnings of rain and clouds, we were thrilled to find blue skies, sunshine and a warm breeze...not to mention some breathtaking scenes to be painted and photographed.

It was a wonderful day topped off with an early evening meal at Bejas Grill in Fredericksburg, a few gallery stops and the lovely ride home. I can't think of a better way to take the sting out of a Monday morning!

A quick photo of today's plein aire painting...
12" x 9"
Oil on Canvas

Saturday, April 10, 2010

WANING AUTUMN & the Salon International 2010

"Waning Autumn" was painted to save the last colors of Fall. I'm from up north in NJ and I get really nostalgic when the leaves start to drop and the first chilly winds hit the Hill Country of Texas.

When I was growing up, my Mom and I would gather the colorful red, orange and yellow leaves that covered the ground all around New Jersey. We'd pick up the best and brightest leaves & take them home in a big brown grocery bag. Mom would heat up wax in a frying pan, we'd dip the leaves in the wax to preserve them and we'd hang them all around my room.

This was one of my yearly milestones that marked the end of Autumn and usher in the pre-holiday Winter events. The leaves outdoors would dry up and blow away but my collection would remain until the decorations of Christmas would take their place.

Now I live in Texas and although the Hill Country is beautiful, it offers no match for the brilliant Autumn colors that I remember as a child.

This year, when the chilly winds started to blow and the live oak leaves started to turn brown, I went in search of some local color! I found this lone tree on our property, nestled among the "winter naked" soapberry trees and live oaks, I clipped off some branches and tucked them into my favorite vase and put them in a place of honor... next to my easel. I set the light low to represent the "setting sun" of the waning autumn and did this still life painting.

I still don't know what kind of tree it is, but I'm taking care to protect it from harm so I'll be able to enjoy it's color again next year in the last days before Winter's return.

This painting is 24" x 12" Oil on Canvas and is currently available through the Greenhouse Gallery of Fine Art in San Antonio. Come visit!