Archive for September, 2009

The process oil vs. watercolor Pacific Trees

Tuesday, September 1st, 2009

The Process:

As I was wandering through our backyard the other day I took a moment to appreciate living in the Pacific Northwest.  We get these amazing cloudy nights where the clouds create a luminescent layer back lit by the moon.  Looking at the clouds over my head,  I had an inspiration moment and decided to try and recreate the feeling I had.  It is rare that I’m walking through an area and can see what I want to create like a vision floating in my head.   The hard part is then carving the time to create what I want.   I will start research, photographs and sketches immediately.   I find that the painting takes over my brain and it’s all I think about—in our family we call it the art frenzy.   All else becomes secondary to creating the piece—at least it used to.. now I have a personal life that matters more so I have to figure out a better balance.

For this piece, I wandered through our backyard and took a series of photos of the trees that inspired the piece.  I then printed the photos out and pasted them around my worktable so I could stare at them as I created.

Tress Backyard-2

Creating the sky in my vision was an interesting journey.   Since I normally work in watercolor, I naturally began thinking of this piece in watercolor.

Watercolor pnw bkd

That being said, I thought this piece would be a great opportunity to create an oil painting.  I started a watercolor sky and an oil sky… and loved the oil sky.  I had so much fun that I began adding the trees to the oil painting first.

Oil PNW trees

I found that the required patience of working in oil was a major transition but probably good for my character (I’m terribly impatient).  I first created the sky and had to wait two days for it to dry.  Each tree was painted and then given some time to dry.

PNW tress-2Now the question is, “is the painting done?”.  I welcome your comments and thoughts on both the oil painting and the watercolor painting.

Best wishes to all who are out there!