Saturday, April 16, 2011
Cape Cod Sunset
Title: Cape Cod Sunset
Size: 9 x 12, Oil on Panel, with gold frame
Price: $700 Contact me for purchase
Here in the NorthEast, we are finally coming to the end of an incredibly long and difficult winter. During these months, I've spent time working from several studies I did from last years' trip up to Cape Cod (as well as some private commissions.)
My process for creating landscape work is a combination of plein air studies, reference photographs and tons of field notes. I begin by working the actual piece in the field, which is then finished in the studio. For large works, anything over 16 x 20 in size, I will work a smaller study and then enlarge it when I get back to the studio. The goal is to capture the essence of the place. This means focusing on the major elements such as composition, colour, atmosphere, and most importantly for me, the light and mood. Yes, I photograph the scene, but when I get back to the studio to finish the work, the goal is not to simply copy the photograph. The reason is, too much information is lost - especially values, colour temperatures and most importantly, the feel of the place and the sensory experience.
I'm sure you've experienced a beautiful scene, taken a photograph, looked at it later and realized "the photo doesn't do it justice". This is where my field notes come into play. I write down every possible thing about the experience that I can. For example, what was the temperature and feeling of the air - warm, cool, soft, brisk. What sounds was I hearing? Wind in the trees? How did it sound? Smells? Was it earthy and loamy or brackish? All of these sensory experiences play a vital role in interpreting the landscape. It's not just about making it look "exactly like that place", its more about telling you what the experience was at that time.
This painting was created in Truro on Cape Cod at the end of a warm, late summer evening. The air was cooling as the sun went down, and the last bits of light radiated a gentle warmth on my face. The sounds were few; the distant lap of water as the tide was out, a few gulls and very soft wind. As I worked to capture the essence of the place, I noted the difference between the peacefulness of the place and the energy of the quickly changing light and the brilliance of the light.
Posted by Anonomous at 7:59 AM