Friday, May 22, 2015

Lurking on the Horizon

 © 2015 R.L. Delight, Lurking on the Horizon, 9"x12", oil on canvas panel, plein air

I decided to head up to Cannon Beach to paint yesterday to paint at Ecola State Park. My decision was mainly based on two reasons. The first is that my two year park pass expires at the end of this month and, while I will get a new one, I seem to want to cram in as many visits as I can in the remaining time. I am sure there is a psychological reason for that! The second reason is that I wanted to stop at the White Bird Art Gallery to have a look at a couple of artist's work. I admire both of these artists and both are local.

I stopped at the art gallery first. It is always a treat to go and enjoy and admire the art, one I don't partake in nearly enough. I was not disappointed either! I even managed to find a parking place in Cannon Beach the day before a very busy weekend. Memorial Day weekend kicks off our busiest season on the coast. This year, probably due to the nice weather, seems to be busier than usual, even during the off season.

After the gallery, I headed up to Ecola State Park. I wanted to paint at Chapman Point again. The day was foggy but I love the mysterious diffused light. It brings out the most amazing colors in the sea. When I reached my painting spot, Haystack Rock, Cannon Beach's breathtaking icon, was barely visible. I have been putting off painting Haystack Rock because of its famous icon status. I wanted to wait until I was ready, but I loved the misty illusiveness of it hanging on the horizon and decided to put it in. Of course once I started in, the fog thickened and it wasn't visible. I wasn't worried though, I knew it would be back. Sure enough, it reappeared and I was ready for it.
Here are a few more pictures of the day:

Chapman Point looking toward Haystack Rock.

A foggy view with Crescent Beach

A visit from a crow friend hoping to be invited to tea.

Breathtaking beauty.

Today is a catch-up day for the small things that need to be done to make life go a bit more smoothly. I know I am spoiled with the solitude that can be found in such a beautiful area but I find it challenging to be out painting on a holiday weekend. I don't mind talking to people when I am out painting but when they outnumber me by such large amounts it is hard to get work done and concentrate. I will be working close to home until next week.

Have an enjoyable, safe Memorial Day weekend and remember to take time to honor the spirit of the holiday!


Thursday, May 21, 2015

Contemplating Spirit

Yesterday I joined a local group of artists and painted on the grounds of a local church, St. Catherine's. This church is one of my favorites as it was designed by a local architect with Spirit in mind. It is beautiful, inside and out. Nature plays a big roll in the design here.

The afternoon shadows were lovely and I was drawn to this quiet contemplative spot. I admit, I misjudged the direction of the path of the sun. I will need to pull out my compass when in unfamiliar spots! This was a bit of a change for me, which is always a good thing to do. I have come to the realization that I really don't like human-made artifacts in my paintings and I prefer the wild places to those that are deliberately shaped by people. It is a beautiful spot, just a different kind of beauty.

The wild places touch my soul more than cultivated spots. They call to me.

Here are two pictures of the final painting. The first was taken on the spot before packing up. The second was taken this morning with filtered overcast light. I love the light in the first one. The second one is nice too but gives a different mood. This gives me food for thought about photographing my work. Something I will have to work on.

© 2015 R.L. Delight, Contemplating Spirit, 6"x8", oil on canvas panel, plein air.

© 2015 R.L. Delight, Contemplating Spirit, 6"x8", oil on canvas panel, plein air

I am heading up to Cannon Beach this afternoon to paint. Back to the wild places...


Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Change Over

© 2015 R.L. Delight, "Change Over", 10"x8", oil on linen panel, plein air + studio

I am finally able to get out to many of my favorite spots to paint. I even managed the hike into Short Sands last week! The painting above, however, is not from Short Sands beach in Oswald West State Park but from a few miles north, at Falcon Cove. This was painted at a vacation rental, owned by a friend. My mate was doing some work there so I went along too and painted. Oh my! I couldn't have asked for better conditions or a more beautiful spot.

I didn't quite finish the painting before we left. Not only did I have a small interruption from the garden maintenance crew but the light, tides, and color of the ocean shifted dramatically. I don't usually see such a dramatic color change in the ocean over such a short period of time. It was beautiful to behold. The name of the piece is derived from all the changes that happened as I painted. The tide turned, the light, the color of the sea, and wave direction changed, and there was a change in color from the horizon to where the ocean approached the breakwater.  I finished the painting yesterday in the studio using my Notan sketch and memory. Here is a picture of the painting on site while still in progress:

"Change Over" WIP

I did not make major changes, just a few corrections and finishing. I will probably be putting this one up for sale. I want to consider if I want to use it for a reference for a larger painting before I do that.

Since this is such a beautiful spot, here are a few pictures of the view I took:

Cape Falcon looking north to Cannon Beach

Looking out to sea.

Needless to say, I could happily stay there at least a month painting all day, every day. The ocean energy is quite fierce at this spot as it is on the cliff side. I can imagine it would be intense during a storm! Such beauty here where I live. I am fortunate.

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