This week the Friday morning class was to meet at Belvoir, the same place where we painted last fall. The weather looked chancy--it had rained most of the night, but it wasn't raining at the moment, so I headed out the usual route. It was very overcast and foggy driving there, at least we'd have some interesting atmospheric effects to paint.
Lee decided the class was ready to take on some architecture, and the old barn at Belvoir is a noble structure to paint. With a classic hip roof and a dirt road leading to it, it would be an interesting painting to compose along with a drawing lesson. Lee's explanation/demo of two-point perspective was elegant and simple for those with no background on the subject.
Still, it took a long time to draw our compositions. I had mine completely drawn, then realized the barn was exactly in the middle of my panel, so I erased it and repositioned the barn a bit off-center. It was after eleven-thirty when we started the painting, and by this time the clouds were thinning and a bit of sun was shining through, making the lush greens appear incredibly vibrant. Time just flew; I didn't have a chance to work on any details. I had just enough time to cover the panel and lay down the masses, trying to get the right val-hues from the start, yet the painting "reads." Lee pointed out how the light reflected from the grass made the shadowed face appear greenish in color and how this effect holds true for all shadows. We'll be back next week to try another painting of the barn.
* * *The previous weekend I wanted to paint some azaleas before their season of glory was over. A visit to nearby Brighton Dam showed the Glendale varieties planted there in huge masses had finished blooming, so I went to Brookside Gardens hoping to catch a few plants still in bloom. I was not disappointed: the trails through the woods had a number of brightly-colored azaleas and rhododendrons. There are few other objects in nature with that beautiful pink-magenta color.
Trail Through the Woods at Brookside Gardens, oils on canvas panel, 9" x 12," $300 unframed.