Deep November

TM8614 Deep November 36x36 oil on panel

TM8614 Deep November 36×36 oil on panel

Deep November began its life (in October) as a lively pondscape with strong contrasts and lots of leaves falling into the water – but it didn’t stay that way. As I worked on the painting into November, the quieter, darker mood of the month crept up on me. I saw the pond “buttoning up” for the winter. The colors of the reflections were tinged with gray and even black. It was a landscape Mark Rothko would have appreciated. It seemed only fitting to rework the painting and pay homage to Rothko. I eased the transition between colors and emphasized the blocks of color that remained. The narrow, yellow band of floating detritus echoes the demarcations in classic Rothko paintings. Pine needles replaced most of the fallen leaves – a quieter gesture. Details below. Enjoy.

TM8614 Deep November 36x40 oil on panel

TM8614 Deep November – detail from top of painting with black reflections and floating maple leaf

TM8614 Deep November - detail showing bands of reflections and pine needles

TM8614 Deep November – detail showing bands of reflections and pine needles

Technical painting notes: When I realized I wanted to totally change the feel of the painting, I used a soft rubber roller and translucent dark gray oil paint to roll gray onto (most) of the painting’s  surface, leaving the darks near the top alone. I used a silicone scraper to make staccato marks into the wet surface, then used a fine brush to add pine needles and hints of brighter reds. When this layer was dry, I used a plastic bag to spread a translucent, blue-black, streaky layer across most of the painting. Again, I sscraped into the wet paint and added more staccato dashed to keep the surface interesting but still quiet overall. Some drips and spatters of paint added dimension. When dry, I reinforced the lights and added red to violet glazes. Additional needles, a dark selective glaze to deepen the darks, and a few touches of pale gray completed the painting.

3 thoughts on “Deep November

  1. love your
    paintings! I’ve been painting reflections and often find myself reaching for all sorts of things including hands and plastic bags! I appreciate your studio notes, it is very generous of you to share your secrets. Thanks!

    • I’m glad the technical painting notes have been of use to you. Working one’s way through a painting is always a balance between trying something new and findng new ways to utilize lessons learned. happy painting!

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