The image below was made as respite from the paintings I am working on for the February show, although I may include it as it relates to the theme.
Initially I wanted to explore the field, as I love the way is sits this time of year. The dormancy and texture put me in mind of a tapestry, and the particles lifted and swept by the wind remind me yet again that nature is never still-minute microcosms playing in the air.
But when I got into the painting the sky seemed to take over and I let it. My Mother, who passed away less than a year ago, loved the yellows in a grey November sky. I remember our November walks and country drives-pulling over to the side of the road to marvel at the simple splendour of a November Sky.
As I’ve mentioned before, I often like to paint on top of older paintings and that’s exactly what I did here as I thought it might add to the texture of the field. There was a lot of red in the under-painting which I think added to the depth in the land portion. I did, however, prime the sky portion with aluminum and am happy I did as the greys and lighter hues retained their clarity more so I think than had I not used it. I did get carried away though-when the painting was very wet I gently dispersed some fine aluminum powder throughout the sky as well as in the field-in hopes of emulating the wee field particles caught in the shifting light. It did work-depending on how the light hits it there is a subtle trick of the eye quality-a bit of movement.
November(She loved a November Sky)
oil & aluminum on canvas
Unfortunately because of the aluminum’s reflective qualities, it makes it REALLY difficult to photograph. In the actual painting, the tones and value shifts in the sky are closer-the top left more subdued and even and the willow tree on the lower left horizon line much lighter/brighter. I will let the whole painting dry and re-shoot.