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Start important lesson

I had been working on and over working a nocturne painting for several months. At one critique session with my favorite artists a very good friend had said that the light cast from the indistinct shed in the almost black foreground looked a little "Kincaid." Well, that did it...this painting had to go. So today, with my handy sander, the painting was reduced to dust and I went on to paint a light, airy scene from a photo I took when we drove back to Oregon from Texas last year. Ah,this painting breaths, and without any help from "precious notes of light." What an important lesson..."Let is go, Janice!"
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View from the Cliffs...more progress

I had let this 60 x 60 sit for a couple of weeks while I thought about it. Today, I said, "focal point?" I decided that if I were standing on our cliffs late in the day, the river could be quite dark, the foreground, too...and the drama would be about 20 miles away as a the sun casts light on Juniper Butte. So I darkened the foreground, a lot, and then worked on the clouds,which were to point of interest. It is still a work in progress...a real challenge since it has been several years since I worked this large. Need to remember, even in a large painting can't have fighting areas of focus...and love using my large brushes again!
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It painted itself...

This painting was 90% painted in one hour or a little more...I still need to work on some hilights, some value stuff...but sometimes the painting just paints itself. I had this photo reference for quite awhile...just waiting for a dreary studio day (and we have that in spades...gray, cold, winter).
One of the side benefits of painting landscapes is that I can get into the painting and think I am out in the sunshine.
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Step away...then return...

While I was in the studio today working on some high desert paintings (see prior blogs), I looked at an unframed little study of the view from the bridge over the Deschutes near my house. It just looked a little bland. While I am not one who likes lots of "color notes." This needed some lift. So in about 2 minutes I think I made a huge difference in the appeal of this piece. Jean LeGassick always tells us not to scrub out or destroy a painting in the never know what you have when you get home. I think the same is true for studio work...let it sit awhile...then do what is needed.
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More for the series..

I seem to have been painting,not blogging...but here is another small painting from what I think will be a series of high desert paintings that capture the different moods of the desert. This is a day when there were a lot of dramatic cumulus clouds.
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Starting a New Series..

In the gloom of winter (it is rain/snowing right now) is nice to think about the summer days. I have been going through old photo reference for some high desert scenes. Just painting them reminds me why I love being out in the desert...and also why I really like painting int he field (when it is not rain/snowing)...but in the interim, these will have to suffice.
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Still painting...

We were out of town and then I got on a schedule to paint some possible contest entry paintings. This is one. While I normally don't do seascapes, it fits the requirements for the show I am entering. Oddly enough, I was at this beach last year, and started an oil sketch near sunset, so I had the original to work on, plus some good photo scrap. Anyway, it was fun.
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