“Pup”. 10″x10″. Acrylic on Cradled Wood Panel. Painted October 2022.
Seemed like time to do another dog painting. My usual approach is to do a graphite drawing first to work out composition and relative values. In this case I did two drawings ( faster sketch and a slower more accurate drawing of the dog). The fun part was doing the painting. Fortunately, the reference photo had an interesting composition, good contrast and the dog was very photogenic – looking alert and straight into the camera.
I also wanted to see what the effect of having a varnish would be to the painting. Because it is painted on wood and uses a lot of saturated colours, the final varnished piece really popped. I’m not sure that it is right for every acrylic painting, but in this case, I think it worked out well.
New Painting: Study for Early morning on Lake Powell
“Early Morning on Powell Lake – preliminary painting.” Painted October 2022. 20”x30”. Acrylic on Canvas. This painting is a study to explore some of the colour choices and consider textures/techniques for painting this particular landscape. The ultimate painting is going to be a a much bigger painting (3 feet x 5 feet). The view for this painting is from a friend’s floating home on Lake Powell. I found this landscape breath-taking and I took a lot of reference photos. I find the coastal mountains often feel less rugged than the Rockies, but two of these mountains standout and are named Beartooth and Rain Tooth. My challenge is to capture a sense of the grandeur and movement in this landscape, balanced against the early morning light and tranquility of the calm lake. It’s an interesting painting, but I don’t think I’m expressing the feeling I am hoping to achieve. I’ll have to explore a couple of other choices before I try to tackle the full size painting.
Painted September 2022. 48”x24”. Acrylic on Canvas.
About 50 feet above the shoreline, at the top of the bluff stands several stately Douglas Fir trees. One, standing particularly straight and tall, has great sweeping branches that reach out in all directions. This tree has been able to handle the full force of the South-Easterly winds that blow up the Malaspina Strait in the winter, so it has a real sense of permanence and stability. It also provides a spot for the eagles to roost while they survey the Salish Sea, looking for their next meal. I find there is a real visual poetry in the arc and sweep of the branches of the Douglas Fir. On windless days, when the branches are motionless, the tree seems to give off an energy or vibration that I’ve tried to express in this painting. I’ve never thought myself much of a tree-hugger, but after spending several days obsessing over this tree while I painted it, that may have changed.