Trunks and Shadows


This is a plein air painting that I call Trunks and Shadows. I did this yesterday in the park below the dam at Gardner Lake where I live. Doing Plein air painting is essential to growing and learning as an artist. It makes you move quickly through the subject and requires a bit of memory and imagination because things such as the light will change while you're out there in nature.


The canvas that I started with was already pre toned with a layer of soft and light colored green that was allowed to dry before I went to the field. I was using oil on this painting so the green background was great to help me move a little faster. Some of the colors used in this piece are burnt umber, phthalo blue, phthalo green, yellow ochre, Lemon yellow, Permanent light green, Cerulean blue, and Titanium white.



The easel I use outdoors is just a cheap metal easel and I also have a hinged board that I built to attach to it in case I have to hike somewhere and don't have a table or anything to put my paint and pallet on. I also have a backpack for hiking in case I need to. If at all possible though I like to have my truck next to me to hold all the equipment.


This painting is basically a study in light and shadow interacting with the trees and grass. There isn't a whole lot of detail in this painting, details such as grass and leaves are simply implied by using a lot of texture in my brush strokes and contrast between light and dark.



Of course when you're painting in a public park you'll have people coming up to you interested in the picture you're painting. A very nice lady named Amy who is on our lake board came to see what I was painting and took this picture of me. I always love it when people are interested in what I'm doing when I paint so I can have the chance to interact with them. The good Lord made us for interaction with one another so I try to do my best to live up to his command.


This original painting is for sale. It's an 11" x 14" painting for $308. As always I have 500 limited edition prints that will be sold of this painting at this link