The local parks where I live serve me well. The bonds I vote for translate into maintained places that keep to a natural low key vibe. Just what I like. No picnic tables or swing sets, a visiting child can look for bugs. Most of my paintings, like the one above, come from my walks there. Occasionally though I get out of town and if the trip allows, into someplace wilder. Not back packing nature but more like car camping. I carried a pack in Boy Scouts but never since. I may give the impression I`m hiking in pristine wilderness but I`m really a mile away from my home.
However last week, after a visit with nearby in-laws, we went to Silver Creek Falls state park. It`s a little chunk of old growth forest with multiple waterfalls and undisturbed rainforest vegetation. It`s a bath of green!
With some really big trees
As you can imagine, the atmosphere of the place is kind of reverent.
I just finished 'Barkskins' by the wonderful Annie Proulx and she shows the consequence of centuries of logging. Because she`s a great writer, I could stomach the descriptions of the brutal massacre of the New World`s forests and the incredibly arrogant attitudes behind it. It is ugly and the genocide of the people living in those places, will surprise no one. It is the story of our country entwined with the history of the timber industry. As an Oregonian, I`m glad I`m better educated now about the business that first produced the wealth of my state.
This was painted a couple of days later;
A couple of years ago, I was perusing the vast Valley House Gallery website when I stumbled across Bob Stuth-Wade and it was like a jolt of electricity. How had this magical realist ever gotten by me??
He knew the soul of the Southwest intimately, and his technique is so precise and skilled , it`s utterly baffling.Yet he is not a hyper-realist. He works from life on location and his intentions seem to be humane, even loving. He takes realism to a rare, maybe holy place. A Stuth-Wade painting is a clear view into the miracle of existence.
I`ve done some more outdoor work myself. That meadow above is no other than the Bryant Woods meadow! That place just gives and gives to me.
Mitch Burrell and me in a photo by Burt Jarvis. That was a fun day. I`m back to my old method of hauling around an awkward lawn chair and painting on my lap. The fancy easel I bought just wasn`t right and it took me a while to figure it out. The palette didn`t let me get close enough to the paper, I had to lean over it. Anyway being closer to the ground is nice. I was studying the grasses;
which led to this;
"I can tell as soon as he turns up at the garden gate. I can tell if he had a good day by the way he carries himself, whether he fumbles with his keys, whether he says hi. Just a few weeks ago, he came in and said 'it`s all over. I simply cannot paint!' The next morning he left early and stayed in the studio all day without putting a single mark on the canvas, just trying to look at it in a new way. And then he came home and said 'I think it`s the best thing I`ve done'." Phylis Diebenkorn, from the Diebenkorn Foundation on Instagram.
work for sale in my studio
prints by Fine Art America