Thursday, August 11, 2011

Island in a Sea of Grass

It's very challenging to paint Plein air in the Adk's. You can go from overcast to bright sunshine and back in seconds. Sometimes little openings in the clouds will illuminate a hillside and you go "oh, WOW!" and you want to paint it in and then it's gone. Decisions must be made. That's why I like to paint small. This little hump of land is a local landmark in Keene Valley. Some say its an Indian burial ground but I got it from the source(Pat Quinn of Mountain Meadows) that it is a KAME , something the glaciers left on their journey back north some thousands of years ago. This feature has been painted by artists since they've been coming up here in the 1800's. The field was once a farm but being state land now, is gradually reverting to forest and wetlands. There is on old barn nearby that is the most photographed barn in the park . We both chose not to do that. I have to thank my painting buddy Tim for picking the spot and getting me out here to paint early in the morning. We had a very limited time (1hour ) so we had to paint fast and furious, the only way to do it.As much as I like painting as a solitary experience , painting with a friend is like running or hiking. It gets you out there when you might be sleeping late or reading the paper. And it"s great to bounce ideas off each other and see just how differend each persons vision can be. We arrived after 7 and set up our stuff and walked around for a vantage point. We set paint to canvas at 8. From there it was a light show, every second bringing new revelations. What do I paint? What do I leave out? I decided to"break the rules" and place the kame dead center. It works in a square, like an island in a sea of grass. 6x6in oil on birch . SOLD