Spring has arrived a bit slow here in Minnesota this year, but it's here and there's way too much to paint! The Crab Apple trees have already come and gone, the lilacs are going crazy and the green is electric! This new green of spring for the most part is a bit tough to paint and can be somewhat unpleasing to end up with, however it is what it is and the fact that it's green and not white is a very good thing! Last week I spent the week painting outside on location at the farm where I grew up. The little stream piece was done in about an hour and a half in the evening. I stood on the bridge crossing over the water looking North. I had my daughter and my dog along with so there were a few distractions but it's life and the fact I was painting 'from life' it seemed pretty fitting! The added bonus to bringing along a 12 year old and a 6 month old black lab puppy is there is no time to spare! It forces one to put it down and put it down right!
Lilacs, gotta love 'em! And 'gotta paint 'em FAST'! They don't stay perky for long once cut. I did this piece in one full day and decided to be finished. My goal was to use natural light so it would be a bit softer and cooler than the controlled warm lighting I often use in my still lifes. I like that the shadows are so warm and soft. There are lots of little temperature notes in the whites that I'm afraid is difficult to view their subtleties due to my horrible photography skills. The tiny little notes of differences are quite beautiful in their purity. These delicate degrees of differences are what drive and inspire me to paint flowers from life. It's absolutely incredible the colors that exist!
"Fresh Cut Lilacs"
14x14 oil on linen panel
"Stream In Spring"
10x8 oil on linen panel