January on McReynolds Road
14" x 20" Watercolor
My son Jeff has been sharing pictures of his village, North Danville, VT. I know the area intimately as I walk the dirt roads every morning during visits to his family. There are five dirt roads, all steep hills, that take off from Bruce Badger Memorial Highway that is the main road through the village. The main part of town is 12 houses and a church. The hills are dotted with farms and homes. I always ask permission to paint from photos of others, so I don't violate copyrights. Jeff tells me he is honored. I started this piece Wednesday evening and it was one that painted itself. I did the sky and mountains very wet and let them run together. The remainder was wet onto dry. I added the finishing touches in the morning. I enjoyed mixing the gray tones in the lower left corner on the paper.
I love the shape element and simplicity. This is both. The only real addition to the scene are the weeds in the foreground which was a huge white field in the photo. The critique group yesterday gave me a thumbs up on the piece and made one suggestion to soften the diagonal line of weeds on the left and right edges. I may yet, but I am reluctant to touch the piece, which I have already finished in a nice wood frame, and I fear disturbing the freshness.
Below are my smallest framed pieces for the show, done on 7" x 10" Arches watercolor block, and framed in 11" x 14" metal frames. The top four are parts of my Room with a View series from my travels using a tiny Koi pan paint set. The left bottom piece was from another Jeff photo. The bottom right piece was en plein air with the Santa Clara Valley Watercolor Society paint sites group. We roam the Santa Clara Valley, painting, hiking, and sketching.
"The Launderette," Aeroskubing, Denmark,
"Down the Hill," Pacific Grove, CA;
"The Cathedral," Tallin, Estonia;
"Driving the Rio Grande," near Taos, NM;
"Fall on Lake Eden," Vermont;
"Fall Colors in San Jose," California
"Fall Colors in San Jose" is featured near the bottom of the paint sites page of the society. I just discovered that the other day. I know that it simply means the plein air chairs are happy to have the leader among their faithful plein air painters. Of our 400+ members, their group numbers over 60, and on a given day, there are usually 8 to 20 artists painting on location.
I'm now up to 44 pieces for the show, a few of which remain to be framed. A few additional pieces still exist in my mind and may yet get painted!