Happy Thanksgiving!...

Walker Park Pier sm

 

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I hope you are all having a great weekend surrounded by people you love.

This is a painting from the end of summer in Maine. It’s one of my favorite views for the variety of compositions. I painted this one on site, at a playground where I bring my kids. I’m standing on a hill, looking back into Rockport Harbor. One reason I like this spot so much is how the warm greens and red buildings contrast against the cool blues of the water. There’s also a nice movement of the building shapes set into the hillside. I think the canvas size is 18×40″.

Laguna Rooftops...

Laguna rooftops 16x20sm

 

Sometimes the challenge of a painting is how to simplify a busy scene into simple brushstrokes. When I saw this view, I was very interested in painting it, but wasn’t quite sure I could pull it off. I liked the staggered buildings going back into the hillside, but tried to just simplify them into pieces of color. I wanted to suggest the buildings without painting in every window and piece of trim. This painting is 16×20″.

Crashing Wave...

Crashing Wave 11x14sm

 

It’s really fun to paint crashing waves and the rocky shore. The contrasts between hard and soft, dark and light, warm and cool… they all add up to a fun subject. The crashing surf can be hard to freeze in place, but I try to find the big shapes in the breaking wave to give the feeling of movement.

Last sketches in Laguna...

Cristal Cove slope 11x14sm

 

My last day in California I spent doing some quick paintings just for fun. The plein air event was over, so I just painted some of my favorite scenes on my way to the airport for a late flight. This spot, Crystal Cove, was one of my favorite new spots. It’s a really interesting group of buildings perched on the side of a cliff looking out over the ocean. I painted this in the early morning while there was still a bit of fog and overcast so I had to work with the flat light. If I get back to Laguna to paint, this is definitely one of the places I would go back to.

 

Eucalyptus Grove...

backlit eucalyptus 16x20sm

 

This is another painting from my trip to Laguna Beach last month. I was painting with several friends in a beautiful grove of eucalyptus trees. About an hour into our paintings the landowner asked us all to move our easels outside of the fenced area where we were. We ended up painting from about a hundred feet back, peering over a fence, wishing we had binoculars to finish our paintings. The trees had a lot of character, and looked great on top of the brilliant, sunlit green grass. The mountain behind the trees was in shadow all morning, a deep blue that made the greens look all the more vibrant. Even though I ended up working from a distance I was happy with how this one came out. This painting is 16×20″ and is on display at the Debra Huse Gallery on Balboa Island, CA.

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