Monday, September 11, 2017

Summer on Location

                                                 Across the River 1 watercolor on Yupo 14x11

 The Clackamas River to be precise. My plein air group met at its confluence with the Willamette River on a lovely, sunny morning. Every single time we`re out in the field, it feels like it would be quite enough to just sit there in the breeze.
Our true mission soon becomes clear and we bring out the gear. Every painter will say, time can get suspended while working. It`s just as true outdoors. I always feel like I witnessed summer. On its terms. Slowly, like when we were kids.

                                                    Across the River 2 watermedia on Yupo 14x11

 The next week we painted on the shore of the Tualatin River. There was a swirling vortex of algae or some other water vegetation that never moved on downstream. It was mesmerizing watching the spiral turn. The water was a deep, clean color and the grasses and trees across the water were thriving. Another beautiful experience, just sitting there with my watercolors.

                                                    Out to the Meadow watermedia on Yupo 14x11

 This I did from memory in my studio. It was easy to picture as I walk along this edge of Bryant Woods all the time. The oaks that border the meadow have such intricate branches framing the view. In late summer the grasses are golden and the mosses are dormant until the rains return and revive the landscape.
Like most of my stuff on Yupo, this began as a watercolor but I eventually had to finish it with acrylic. The speckles came from spraying water on the paint to re-emulsify the paint. Rather than blend them in, I left them because they seemed to add to the ornate quality of the trees.

 As most of you know, this has been our reality in the Pacific Northwest for weeks now. The flames haven`t been visible from Portland but the smoke has been heavy and sometimes choking. I`ve heard that the fire is so hot, trees are exploding.
 The Columbia River Gorge is where we go to recreate and restore our psyches. The immense beauty was always a reminder to our better selves of proper priorities and often a remedy for personal griefs.
With the southeast US inundated with flooding from the hurricanes and Mexico recovering from the largest earthquake in a hundred years, North American is on the ropes.

Included in my show at the White Bird Gallery in Cannon Beach;

                                                     Autumn Slough oil on canvas 50x40

                                                         November Morning oil on panel 26x24

                                                   Wet Snow on the Marsh oil on panel 26x24

                                                                 Randall circa 1958


Mitch said...

You have really presented us with a group of beautiful works, Randall. I'm looking forward to a trip to the coast to see your show soon. And your plein air work is stunning and true, full of the feeling of place. I especially like how you captured the movement of the algae on the Tualatin. Fantastico!

E.M. Corsa said...

Now you know me well enough to know I am a true watercolor girl; you yourself said watercolor must run through my veins. BUT those three oil paintings...what can I say, perfection.

Libby Fife said...

I am hard pressed as usual to say which I like best. They all have something that appeals to me.

To show how bad it has been, I have lost track of the fires burning. We had about a week there in my area where the smoke form the Yosemite fires was so bad that it drifted to us. It drifted up north too so that the mountains east of us were barely a refuge. Really bad for all of us.

I envy you being outdoors to paint and sketch. I guess the weather has been mild enough? And I like the idea of witnessing summer unfolding. The change of seasons is a miracle but how often do we stop to reflect on that?

Beautiful and abundant color as always. Thank you!
PS-That chicken needs something sparkly to tie the whole picture together...

Sharon Leahy said...

Smiles and good morning! It's such a joy to read this, and to know you're back to plein air outings and enjoying the lovely Oregon environment. You are such a master of yupo! These two paintings on yupo look as if you had absolute control over the paint on that incredibly slippery surface. Delightful colors, delightful descriptions you've written. The phoenix has risen. Peace and joy, and glorious colors.