Hiking to the Chasm 2 & 3

TM9425 Hiking to the Chasm #2 7×7 oil on paper

TM9426 Hiking to the Chasm #3 7×7 oil on paper

More studies from Purgatory Chasm – a perfect place to wrestle with the geometry of glacial chaos!More in the works…enjoy.


Hiking to the Chasm

TM9424 Hiking to the Chasm #1 7×7 oil on paper

Spring is quickly arriving, and it’s time to plane field trips with my students. we are hoping to spend some time at Purgatory Chasm in central Massachusetts – sketching and photographing, observing and soaking up the dramatic tectonic and glacial chaos of this piece of geography. It is a spectacular place to paint. And a challenge. While the trees haven’t leafed out quite yet, they will soon. I will be posting sneak peaks at the coming season, and views from various points on the way to the chasm. Enjoy!

By the Beaver Dam

TM9417 By the Beaver Dam #1 7×7 oil on paper

TM9418 By the Beaver Dam #2 7×7 oil on paper

TM9419 By the Beaver Dam #3 7×7 oil on paper

Another small group of related studies, this time near one entrance to Hamlen Woods. The beaver engineers are very busy in this part of town, constantly working on new dams or renovations, and in the process creating catchments for slowing freshwaterĀ  drainage. Their work maintains good habitats for water fowl and other creatures, and filters the water. Of course their work also creates beautiful subjects and vistas for me (though perhaps a bit more muddy than I can reasonably enjoy).

The three studies work there way up from a small culvert toward the more inaccessible swamps. The brushwork loosens, one reason for doing multiple paintings. Each study gives me more confidence. I feel freer to interpret and play with the paint. Enjoy.

Early Summer at the Quarry

TM9415 Early Summer at the Quarry #1 7×7 oil on paper

TM9416 Early Summer at the Quarry #2 7×7 oil on paper

Two interpretations of Early Summer at the Quarry, from different vantage points. Sometimes people ask me why I paint the same place again and again. My answer: it’s never the same! Changes in light, season, viewpoint, and my own mood mean I’ll always see something different and challenging. If I don’t see something new, then the problem is me, and I need to find out why. Painting the landscape (nearly) daily is a record of change and a diary. Enjoy these quarries…..

Three Takes on Winter

TM9407 Forecast, 38 degrees and sunny 7×7 oil on paper

TM9405 Joy in the Morning 7×7 oil on paper

TM9406 Between Storms 7×7 oil on paper

I keep returning to the same places for inspiration – it’s not that the scenery changes remarkably, but rather that the light and atmospherics keep shifting as the weather changes. I’m always surprised and delighted. Enjoy!

Out Behind Kroll’s Field

TM9396 Out Behind Kroll’s Field #1 7×7 oil on paper

TM9397 Out Behind Kroll’s Field #2 7×7 oil on paper

TM9398 Out Behind Kroll’s Field #3 7×7 oil on paper

Ah the pleasures of winter – this time three little paintings based on memories of trekking through Mr. Kroll’s fields to get to the sledding hill. It was the place to be after school let out, but we had to hurry, since we only had about two hours of light left. From the top of the hill, there were two options. Straight down through an opening in the stone wall, or (more exciting) a steeply banked curve to the right under the barbed wire fence and over a narrow brook. That was the best. Mom never knew. Enjoy.

Ways to the Pond

TM9388 Overlooking the Pond 7×7 oil on paper

TM9391 Winter Trail 7×7 oil on paper

There are so many ways – to get somewhere, to see something, to be. When I walk the woods, it seems like the way to be is in absolute stillness, listening to the great symphonies of silence and sound around me. This willingness to melt into my surroundings doesn’t solve my problems, but it does provide the solace and strength to keep going – a way. Maybe that is enough?