Poem from a Stormy Day

TM9568 Poem from a Stormy Day 7×7 oil on paper

It’s the moody days I love, and the dizzying swells coming toward the honey and red stone ledges that shape the coast.


Technical painting notes: This small oil on primed paper was done mostly with a palette knife. Initially, I concentrate on blocking in broad shapes in values darker than what I see in the motif. When this layer is dry, I go back and define the forms using oil paints mixed with Liquin alkyd medium, which speeds the drying time and increases the transparency of the paint. I try to keep the painting spontaneous, taking advantage of accidents – even trying to cause those fruitful accidents on which the painting depends.

New England Coastline #20

TM9561 New England Coastline #20 7×7 oil on paper

Sunlight and shade on fractured granite – perfect for painting with a palette knife and perfect for a pair of hiking shoes. I’ll never tire of the many moods along the New England coastline. Enjoy. More at https://terimalostudio.com/oil-paintings/coastal/

Into the Woods – Relief

TM9559 Into the Woods #64 7×7 oil on paper
TM9558 Into the Woods #63 7×7 oil on paper

The occasional place to sit down and take a break is always welcome. This granite outcrop with shade is perfect. Maybe a book? Maybe lunch? Enjoy.

Technical painting notes: These two views from the trail are painted on the same type of paper but with different primers. The first painting is on acrylic gesso-primed paper. You can see the brush marks along the bottom and right corner. The acrylic gives a non-porous, slick finish, which means the oil paint slips and slides on the surface when I am painting. There is a crispness to the edges.

The second, bottom painting is on shellac-primed smooth paper, which isolates the paper fibers but also gives a softer finish to the paper – more velvety. The softer overall look of the painting is a result.

Notes from the Trail – Into the Dark

I never know what will come from a walk. Usually, the impressions gather into paintings. Of course the next question is what will come from the paintings? Most of the time I can’t answer, especially after the painting leaves the studio. But occasionally, a painting is the beginning of an idea or story, in poetic form. Don’t ask. I really don’t know where that will lead.

Notes from the Trail #3 7×7 oil on paper
Into the dark

Stones, boulders, pebbles
The homely, uncut cousins
Of gems and geodes,
Dragged or levered to
The field's edge.

Some stacked
Some not quite.

Most will slowly roll back
To their original holes;

Think less, sleep more.

Into the summer woods

TM9548 Into the Woods #61 7×7 oil on paper
TM9549 Into the Woods #62 7×7 oil on paper

Ah, the mysterious summer woods. Unlike in winter, summer’s green mantle obscures the wood’s structure and secrets. There are hints, of course. but the wall of rich greens (especially this year!) by default, becomes the real subject – and what a problem. How to mix enough varieties of green to keep the painting interesting. It’s a stretch.

But more importantly, I hope these paintings entice you to stop and linger when you are on the road. The scenery is so charming, the season so brief, and our tree heroes so in need of our support and acknowledgement.

Technical painting notes: Both paintings are on primed, smooth paper. I use a palette knife and Winsor/Newton Liquin when blocking in the dark base layer. Once the base layer is dry, I use brushes to pull out the image, then go back to using a palette knife to “smudge and soften” some areas to create depth and a little mystery.

A Pondly Poem

TM9550 A Pondly Poem 30×60 oil on panel

I think of poems as the most elegant, concentrated way to speak truth with the fewest words, and a great poem reveals itself slowly over time, offering nuanced meanings and shades of emotion. A painting can do something similar with a few well-chosen colors and a steady eye – at least that’s my hope and goal and when I begin a painting. A Pondly Poem looks at the evolution of the pond in spring as the surroundings green up, the air gently softens, and showers work their magic. It is about anticipation, fulfillment, and maybe even melancholy. I suspect there is more in the painting, but like a good poem, it will be some time before I understand what is really at it’s heart. I need to live with it for a while. Details below. Enjoy.

TM9550 A Pondly Poem – detail from upper center with reflected trees
TM9550 A Pondly Poem – detail from upper center showing use of opaque and transparent rolled paint interspersed with brushwork
TM9550 A Pondly Poem – detail from right side with overhanging, barren branches

Along the Way

TM9547 Stopping along the Way 7×7 oil on paper

It’s hard to imagine how roots can penetrate the cracks enough to get a hold, let alone grow. And yet there are trees here, even if there is a limit to their eventual growth . Which makes me wonder, am I looking at an old but stunted tree, or a sapling?

Visiting the Chasm

TM9546 Visiting the Chasm 7×7 oil on paper

Hiking around the chasm is a mystery tour. The surrounding countryside hardly hints at the crazy jumble that is exposed along the fault line. Mountain building, plate tectonics, multiple glacial events – it’s all exposed if you can read the code. Of course even geologists hypothesize with some of the evidence. Maybe that’s part of the reason to keep returning – to see what might be revealed after each freeze/thaw season, Or it might be about catching a glimpse of the granite whales emerging from this turbulent land. Enjoy.