Monday, August 9, 2010

Woodsy Watercolor



I rarely get to do watercolor on site outdoors. Unlike the Urban Sketchers who seem to have a way to do it, I can't get the logistics right. I want to put my paints on a table or some surface, and my paper on another surface, and then I spill the water, or I can't put the kit back together after I use it, etc. And worst of all, the bugs are attracted not just to me but to anything with water or moisture. In August and then into September, vicious yellowjackets make it impossible for me to do anything outside, because they immediately find me and zoom right at me, and I've been stung a couple of times while trying to do art outdoors.

Therefore this painting which was done almost exactly 11 years ago is one of my more successful attempts at true "plein air" painting. And I must admit that I finished it in the studio when I got home. Dunn Loring Park is a very nice woodsy park right in the middle of a busy city. It's good for birdwatching and walking and recreation but as I said, as soon as you try to do anything outdoors in August, the yellowjackets come after you.

I am always fascinated by forests and the pattern of leaves and colors they show. I could paint lots of forest paintings, if I could figure out a way to put myself in the environment without the environment attacking me.

"Dunn Loring Park," watercolor and pen, about 8" x 10", August 6, 1999.

2 comments:

Mike said...

Your last paragraph describes me perfectly. I love the outdoors, I love nature, but I hate bugs! Arg! They ruin everything. Haha.
I enjoy studying the play of light in the leaves of trees. I find photography loses that sense of "being there". Whereas with art and paint, an artist can capture the moment beautifully, as you've done here.

Tristan Alexander said...

Nice! I had hoped to try some of this while at Pennsic...it didn;t happen :(