25 Sep 2012

plein air paintings from the summer

Here are some paintings from the summer, using the 10 x 12 pochade box I talked about in the previous post. It`s funny how paintings and drawings jog your memory, they really are like an artist`s visual diary recording the world around him or her.  When I look at this I`m reminded of how I pleaded with the kids to let me pull over on the way back to Greencastle from Kinnagoe Bay.  The hills around that area are so beautiful....but my strongest memory is of standing by the side of the road, in full view and earshot of a carful of noisy children and a woman who gave me the evil eye because she had to slow down to pass. I`d parked the car in a verge, nearly in the ditch, and you could have got a bus through.  Who said plein air painting was dull?  Anything but... With all those stressful distractions (especially the boisterous offspring), it was pretty difficult to do this, and I think the energy shows in the marks and movement of the brush and painting knife.....



Donegal hills, Kinnagoe bay
10 x 12 inches 
oils on canvas board


peat stacks, Donegal
10 x 12 inches
 oils on canvas board

I did this one using a few sketches from last year`s visit and memory. I`m not as pleased with it as with the first, but I do recall seeing the peat lying out to dry in these pyramid-like stacks, and the ones in the distance looking like broken twigs against the skyline.... Donegal is one of my favourite places in Ireland, not that I have been to every county, but it is really is a special place, and the people remind me of Chile.  It`s very homely.... if you haven`t been, you should go sometime (hope I get a good commission from the tourist board!)


And here`s Kinnagoe bay again.  These were actually the first paintings I did using this pochade box.  With ten crabs and a goby fish (apparently) in a bucket, sandwiches full of sand (is that where the name came from?), a crabbit 1 year-old and 2 dogs that belonged to someone else, it wasn`t easy. But at least Hernán was on hand to help out with the children. The first one below was done in literally 10 minutes, ( since I stain the boards days, even weeks prior to painting, that gives me my middle tone and is basically half the work done).  I much prefer it over the other laboured one with the 2 girls.  I had the blonde-haired girl just right and couldn`t manage to get the other one ok, and then after the dreaded "fiddling" got the better of me, I now prefer the dark-haired girl and really don`t like the other one!!!! Typical! I also need to have more contrast in tone between the sand and the flesh tones, but I posted it anyway so you could see.


Kinnagoe Bay, near days`s end
10 x 12 inches
oils on canvas board


friends, Kinnagoe Bay
10 x 12 inches
oils on canvas board


Below are some little studies I also did in the summer of the light in the sky and the pattern of cut grass in the field.



summer field
8 x 6 inches
oils on canvas board


the first cut
8 x 6 inches
ols on canvas board

These all have yet to be framed and will be for sale in my own studio/gallery.  While it is more or less ready to open soon, we`ve decided to leave the official opening night to November since it`s closer to Christmas (but not too close!) and I`d like to approach other galleries soon, as well as helping Hernán with Fiesta Spanish Club on Mondays after school (and possibly Wednesdays, depending on numbers.)  Here`s the link if you`re interested:

 http://fiestaspanishclub.wordpress.com/

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