Sunday, August 8, 2010

Tom Fong-Inspired Fall Scene

"September Morning, Vermont"
21" x 15"

September mornings in Vermont vary between clear sun and crisp air with frost on the ground, and cool mist that softens the landscape. On this misty morn, color tinges the foliage, a few bright red leaves adorn trees, rust and gold emerge on the lush late summer foliage. Shapes are muted and the edges of the path softly blend with the meadow grasses. Soon the fall leaves will bring fiery beauty to the mountains, but this September morning dampens the skin and quietly surrounds on a morning walk.

This piece had it's start in Tom Fong's class. He encouraged us to paint as many pieces as we could between demos. I finished the work at my Thursday evening South Side Art Club and added a few finishing touches early this morning to bring order to chaos, as Tom describes the process. I lifted out a few lights and added a few splatters to the red leaves. I painted wet-into-wet for all but a few of the grasses and branches.

The nice thing about Tom's method is you can look at reference materials, pick some shapes, and then tap into your memories. Jeanne Rousseau handed me a photo, perhaps from Oregon? I turned a stream into a path (a suggestion from Don and Alison, some of my Thursday artists, as I neared completion), used a couple trees and my personal color scheme to represent Vermont, where I grew up and visit often. I always take a long walk about 6 a.m.

I am synthesizing what I have learned over the years and in recent workshops. Some of my shape-making, boldness, and color choices were honed in the Stephen Quiller workshop in April. You can reference the description of that workshop here. Gerald Brommer's workshop on collage emerges in abstract shapes and the play of varying textures. (Myrna Wacknov recently featured Brommer's Santa Cruz workshop on her blog - awesome.) Willingness to experiment and be bold was influenced by Betsy Dillard Stroud's workshop. My work continues to evolve.

8 comments:

Charlene Brown said...

Your work certainly does continue to evolve. Mary, this is absolutely brilliant! And thank you for tracing the synergy of all the inputs to your creativity.

AutumnLeaves said...

Lovely work, Mary. It has an Asian art vibe to my eyes...

Janice said...

Mary your watercolors are so soft and lovely! This autumn scene is so beautiful...

Megha Chhatbar said...

Beautiful piece of work Mary! I always appreciate your dedication towards your work. You are a brilliant artist!

PAMO said...

Yours is a tremendous evolution indeed. I so appreciate that about you Mary, your openness to process and growth.
This work here is lovely. The composition is especially striking.

Peggy Stermer-Cox said...

Hi Mary, I like the repetition of curves in your composition. And, I like the "loose-ness" you achieve in this landscape. I was wondering how you were doing absorbing all the wonderful workshops you're taking...I see it in your work! Wow!

Christiane Kingsley said...

Mary, this is an outstanding painting. The color combination is perfect with your use of complementary colors highlighted by that super touch of red. I also find fascinating that your foreground is less precise than your background ...as you mention in your poetic description of the painting. Congratulations...this is a real winner!

Barbra Joan said...

Excellent watercolor Mary, The path leads you into the painting and right up to that bright spot.. Love it... you are so good! Unlike me.,,, you KNOW what your doing! BJ