The California Academy of Painters had another fabulous day at the Palo Alto Baylands! We started our spring quarter under the guidance of two extraordinary artists and teachers: Brigitte Curt and Jim Smythe. The day was clear and sunny and with no clouds to speak of. Being artists, we took artistic license and painted in clouds to our hearts' content! Master artist and teacher, Jim Smythe, discusses the concept of the division of space ("where is it? what is it doing?"), rhythmn, color harmony, and so forth. Included are the two 6"x8" studies I painted today, and a view of the baylands.
This is the first "Big Sky" painting I did on February 26, 2009 at the Palo Alto Baylands. I felt initially intimidated by the 'big sky', as I don't usually focus on painting clouds. It was a beautiful, slightly wild winter day with enormous, ever changing cumulus clouds. With great appreciation for natures' beauty, I relaxed into the process and started going 'down river', instead of 'up river'. It became a meditation and one of the most wonderful, gratifying experiences I've had painting!
I painted two oil landscapes today in my solarium while listening to raindrops dancing on glass. One is a variation on a painting I did on 02/26/09 at the Palo Alto Baylands called "Big Sky". I'm working with cloud shapes and warm and cool variations in the sky (bottom painting). The other landscape (top of page) is also from the baylands and is one I started a month ago! I made some significant changes to the foreground trees (simplified them and changed the color) as well as generally adding more paint, all around! A very enjoyable day!
I always wanted to be an artist. I love the materials of art: the firmness of a hog bristle brush, the creamy thickness of oil paint, the texture of bark paper, the smell of plaster. I love stepping into the mystery of creation; not knowing what is going to happen and being astonished by the image that emerges. I'm drawn to exploring the reaches of the
imagination and the orphaned off parts of the self. I like to see what bubbles up from the unconscious mind.