Thursday, May 16, 2013

New tree - Color

My original blog idea was to post whatever drawing I'd done each day. While that didn't quite work out, here in that same spirit are a couple of quick pieces done this week.

The sun was warm and bright - first really comfortable day to sit outside this year. In a spur of the moment decision I headed out to draw a huge old maple across the street. Thinking,  "Keep it simple!" I grabbed a nice sheet of gray paper left from some forgotten project plus a couple of pencils and dove into a race with fast changing early evening light. It was fun!

Looking it over later,  I thought the b&w a bit difficult to understand (How about that snow!) so two days later at the same hour tried a color interpretation on another grey. Naturally that bit of "summer" of the previous few days had disappeared! The wind was now blowing madly and so much colder than I thought it would be -  I had to work fast! I tried to capture the 'flash' of sharp sunlight on the new leaves as they fluttered on twigs but still  barely caught what I saw.  I even went back at the end and added some black, trying to boost the contrast but still it doesn't adequately convey the wonderful light of that evening.

Perhaps the darker paper of the first day would have been better! My friend Harry Orlyk, a master of color would have had the answer! He is out there everyday putting oil paint on canvass to produce gorgeous impressions of Washington County farmland. Check his work @

At the top of the page I said I'd set out to draw a tree.  In the end, it wasn't the tree at all!

"In order for the light to shine so brightly, the darkness must be present."   Sir Francis Bacon

"In nature, light creates the color. In the picture, color creates the light." Hans Hofmann

"Art is not about thinking something up. It is the opposite - getting something down,"   Julia Cameron

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