Thursday, October 13, 2011

Weir Studio, Autumn Afternoon

10"x8" oil on Belgian linen mounted on archival panel

"Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to body and soul." ~John Muir

While at the J.Alden Weir Farm on Monday, I pulled out my sack lunch of PBJ & a banana & a pear & enjoyed the shade at a huge stone table that Weir had installed in his life time. Looking like it was part of the landscape I marveled that I could sit at the same space where he had spent time, and painted his family on that very spot as well! Across the yard from where I ate was his studio. The afternoon sun was catching some of the surfaces and turning that deep red to an almost coral orange glow. A magnificent tree had practically grown up against the building.

Technique-wise I had wanted to try a bit of brush work with my palette knife, as Camille Przwodek had done when I studied with her. Sometimes she would lay in the whole painting with a knife, sometimes with a brush, going intuitively, depending upon how fast she needed to go, how much detail, etc. I knew the afternoon sun would be changing fast. Our days are getting shorter and shorter up here in CT as fall marches on. So, I laid in the building and blocked in most of the basic areas with a brush on this one, then came back in with a knife on much of it. Finally the light had changed drastically enough to call it a day!

I really was taken with Muir's quote- and it seemed to really go along with everything I had encountered on my visit to the J. Alden Weir Farm. Weir certainly had a sense of beauty in nature, and preservation. Muir, a Scottish-born American naturalist, was an early advocate of preservation of wilderness in the US, and living during the same years as Weir.

For more information regarding this painting, please contact me here.

Oh yes, and more good news to share- I had a painting juried into the New Britain Museum of Art - 42nd Annual Juried Exhibition. Juror for the show was Elizabeth Ives Hunter, Executive Director of the Cape Cod Museum, in Dennis, MA. I'm so thrilled to be a part of this museum show! My submission for the show was the recent 12"x12" plein air work, "Chincoteague, Late Afternoon".

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