Wednesday, August 01, 2012


8x10 inch, oil on linen, unframed

This is another painting from my week at Aitkin, Minnesota. I called this one "Serenity" as that is what I felt when I first saw this spot to paint. This painting also received an "Honorable Mention" at the Jaques Art Center Plein Air Painting Event.

The morning started out cloudy and moody unlike the previous day of a constant drizzly rain. Sunshine just did not appear. I setup my easel on a dock/ramp on Farm Lake that extended out into the lake where fishermen put in their boats. The peacefulness and calmness of the waters with delightful reflections is what captured my eye that morning. I blocked in the painting and just about the time that I began putting reflections into the water, the wind decided to rush in. There went the peacefulness of the water. When that happened, I continued to work on the background area of bushes and trees. The wind won the first round.

As I painted, or attempted, I noticed the clouds and light changing in the distance on the lake. There is a small island on Farm Lake and from my view, I delighted in the everchanging light even on this cloudy day. Since the wind would not ease, I finally opted to start another small painting. I wanted to capture the light and a few color notes.
"Farm Lake Rain Study"
6x8 inches, oil, nfs

With this one, I loved how the different sections of land had different values with how far away there appeared. It only took a short time to capture those notes, but it also gave me something to do so that I did not ruin the other painting while waiting for the wind to relax and the calmness to reappear.

Finally, the rain came. I had to stop as it began to down pour and the painting stopped. (I dumped the collected water out of my palette a couple of times.)  By forcing myself to stop, I did myself a favor as the "Serenity" painting is captivating. I did not think much of the painting until later when I stood back and looked at it for the first time a few hours later.

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