In pursuit…..into the woods

I’m back to the woods, looking for the way in, trying to find a path that will yield something new. This week I drew closer to the subject, tried a limited palette with closer values and more simplification. It feels right. Into the Woods #13 is below.


TM8747 Into the Woods #13 6×6 oil on paper

Happy with #13, I began again, trying to take what I learned into the next painting. I approached #14 in a similar way, but used a gesso-primed watercolor paper. I wanted a bit more texture on the surface under the color. I painted a close grove (the wall) quite realistically, then took a roller and started rolling over it to see what would happen. The colors melded and the simplification that resulted was interesting. I went back in with a brush to enhance the trees, added some graphite drawing, detailed the sky, and let it be. The balance between real and abstract, detail and suggestion was improving.


TM8748 Into the Woods #14 6×6 oil on paper

Excited by #14, I decided to do another experiment, but this time I picked up a study I had started in 2006 of the same subject. Unresolved, it had been leaning against a shelf begging for another effort. I painted the trees again, letting much of the original attempt show through, then started drawing into it with pencil, looking for the stark gestures of trunks in a space. I used the roller repeatedly, to soften and mute the results, then redrew the trunks. l like the feel of working this way with a roller (soft rubber). It allows for more spontaneity. Pulling the image out of the matrix keeps the process exciting. It also introduces an element of non-control – something I used to love in watercolor. I think #15 is the turning point. Process and subject are on the same path.


TM8749 Into the Woods #15 6×6 oil on paper




6 thoughts on “In pursuit…..into the woods

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.