Thursday, December 20, 2007

(9) Apple Wagon

11 x 14” watercolor on paper - $125

18 x 24” oil on paper - Sold
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Mid July. Apple selling wagon flanked by farming equipment just north of the Packing House, a threat of storm clouds over the lake and Adirondacks. I worked hard at developing contrast. The apple trees were done quickly (from the fear of the pending storm) and therefore more abstractly than prior works.

The oil was both challenging and at times exciting. I struggled with the value of the sky. The watercolor was much lighter than my memory recalled. My first attempts were to create an almost black sky at the horizon connecting the heavy values from the cart. Just before completing the oil I applied small strokes of light and medium blue across the dark clouds, which gave the suggestion of the on-coming storm along with a lighter contrast compared to the cart and shadows of the box.

I decided to use the small dots of color for the grass and tractor ruts. The tall grass appears to push out of tiny holes where the dots of paint might have been. The trees are abstract in the form of bulky objects versus the more realistic mass of long spindly branches. I like the counterbalance of colors. The broad upper half of the painting is a variety of blues while across the middle of the painting (actually just a little below the median) are several objects of orange or reddish orange. The purple and yellow mixture of dots add complementary colors to the composition.

It is my hope that I developed a visual movement with this work. Each end of the cart forms a “V” shaped border drawing the eye towards either the orange/red fuel tank or the orange/yellow cart to the right. The ruts in the ground swirl and hopefully bring the gaze back towards the sides then up again.

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