Monday, April 18, 2016


            Up Putah Creek  | Pastel | 8x6

April in Winters, CA is my favorite place to be! A short 35 minute drive allows me to increasingly go into my 'nature' mode. By the time I arrive there, my eyes are bathed in beauty - every scene I see has the potential to be a great painting.  This time of year, what I see is all about green. What I paint, is all about NOT green. That's my challenge today!  Just past the new bridge in downtown, this is a look back upstream.

Painting Notes:  At least 3 value planes - today's stated purpose!  On site, it was ALL shades of green.  Years ago, Susan Sarback of the School of Light & Color in Folsom taught me/us a method for relaxing one's eyes to perceive the underlying colors.  As I understood it, stand with your feet apart, hands down. Slowly rotate side to side, all the while letting your eyes go with your body, not concentrating on seeing anything but the scene scan by - from right to left, left to right. After about ten times doing this, begin to notice the underlying colors - works easiest first if you try it on an interior room corner, preferably a white or light colored room with one distinctive source of light. The more you relax the more colors you will see as your eyes quickly scan the scene while your mind is open to the perception of colors. Then paint these colors.  What is most interesting to me is that this is not a subjective perception of color. Literally, scores of artists (once open to the perception of color) will see the same colors!.  

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