This year, all my of small works at the Workhouse coordinate. They hang salon-style in a column of five on the first floor of W-16, working beautifully together. And they are selling fast. Replacements will be arriving Wednesday when the Workhouse reopens.
The overall collection on the first floor of W-16 is so much fun - scaled down versions of the usual larger works or all out divergence from the status quo. It is wonderful to see the creativity of my fellow artists and to include the Studio Artists in W-16.
Among other things, this exhibit will have a People's Choice element to choose one Associate Artist (those juried into the Workhouse and choosing not to have a studio) and one Studio Artist (juried in and choosing to have a studio), with the winners to receive solo shows in the spring in W-16.
I have three pieces on display, but Skyline Stands is the one up for People's Choice. Sure would enjoy a solo show next Spring as the People's Choice Associate, so get out and vote, people!
Occoquan is a quaint town near both me and the Workhouse Arts Center. Having a quaint town only a couple miles away is quite convenient, both in proximity and in the cause of getting other painters to come out to create.
The Occoquan docks and marina areas have undergone an effective overhaul which makes it easier to both paint and find beautiful subjects. I pulled out my artistic license on this one, as I appreciate chances to make things in the landscape red.
This has been a wonderful autumn for painting as I've been concentrating on smaller works. I sure appreciate my painting buddies for revisiting old haunts as well as blazing new trails.
The latter was the case for me in going to Chrysalis Vineyards near Middleburg, Virginia recently. One usually thinks of traditional fall foliage in the trees, however the vines showed off extraordinary color well before them. As a landscape painter, I don't get to use reds that often, but not so this day!
Sky Meadows is a beautiful state park near the tip top of Virginia. The view is spectacular. These fluffy clouds adorned the early fall sky and I chose to paint them instead of the early changing foliage.
I especially love it when I can paint, finish, and can just move my set up 180 degrees to begin painting again. Sky Meadows offers that opportunity.
Much of my work is done en plein air, French for "in the open air." People often associate it with the Impressionists, but the move to paint outside preceded them by a number of decades. The trend to appreciate landscapes as a genre at all was new for the time.
Several characteristics contribute to the distinctive beauty of en plein air painting. They are generally smaller in size in order to be able to capture a scene in a single sitting. Because of the time limit and environmental factors such as the sun and shadows moving, they often lack extensive details and might appear slightly fuzzy or unfinished. Lastly, they tend to have a freshness and spontaneity which makes them impossible to compare to traditional and methodological studio work. That said, my own studio work tends toward the same feel as en plein air, which then identifies my overall style: softness with an edge.
My aim when painting en plein air is for alla prima paintings, which roughly translates for me as "what happens outside, stays outside." It adds another level of difficulty to the work.
These are some local places for landscape painting; most are within an hour of the Beltway. Look here for the complete album, a couple hundred views from my photography collection, which are mapped here.