Morning Glories from the Fens

TM9719 Morning Glories from the Fens 3x17x5 oil on panel

With their cheerful morning faces, Morning Glories always seem like harbingers for a great day. I love the chaotic way they climb and twist. They seem to epitomize nature’s energy. They certainly make me feel better. Details below. Enjoy.

TM9719 Morning Glories from the Fens – detail from center left
TM9719 Morning Glories from the Fens – detail from upper right
TM9719 Morning Glories from the Fens – detail from center right

Technical painting notes: I started the painting by blocking in major masses with small rollers loaded with a blackish green oil paint, drawing into the wet paint to suggest a few details of the flowers and leaves. When this base was dry, I glazed the darker areas with an indigo glaze then started refining the image with a roller loaded with various greens and gray tones. I used a broad angle brush to suggest the flowers, painting the form then rolling over it to smudge their faces. More brush work and glazes, followed by roller work, built up the image and details without getting too fussy. I went in with the pencil lines toward the end for definition and because Iove the contrast of the fine graphite lines against the broader roller marks.

Sanctuary #3 – Deep in the Woods

TM9681 Sanctuary #3 – Deep in the Woods 40×36 oil on panel

Sanctuary #3 is based on memories from granite quarries in Gloucester, Massachusetts. The rock walls and mysterious pools are wonderfully tactile, especially lovely when framed by Nature reclaiming its original wildness. I love walking among these relics of intervention, looking at the evidence of human-scaled labor replaced by the chaos of lush vegetation returning. There is a sense of history and the feeling that ghosts are watching me.

Afternoon at the Quarry

TM9602 Afternoon at the Quarry 7×7 oil on paper

Cape Ann, north of Boston Massachusetts is full of old quarries – some tiny and some huge. The local granite was used to build much of early Boston and other colonial cities and towns in New England. Today, the woods are encroaching, but hiking the inland trails yields all sorts of quarry surprises and lovely views with New England’s basic assets of stone, water, and trees. This fairly shallow quarry is also a good place to listen to operatic bull frogs. Enjoy.

Two Quarry Studies

TM9590 Summer Reaches the Old Quarry #2 7×7 oil on paper
TM9583 Summer Reaches the Old Quarry #1 7×7 oil on paper

These two studies were done on smooth, primed paper, which informed the quick, blocked in treatment using a palette knife. The strong sun gave me an opportunity to play with simplified shadows. I felt like Edward Hopper was sitting next to me, of course I was in his neighborhood!