Sunday, June 10, 2012

Starting the day in the rain!  I huddled in the shelter of a friend's garage for the first half of this painting.  It was the morning of the annual Plein Air Paintout, sponsored by Crooked Tree Art Center, Petoskey, Michigan.  I almost didn't go, since it was raining pretty hard in the morning.  But it was supposed to clear by noon, so out I went. 

"Blue Truck" -- plein air field study -- oil on canvas panel 11x14" -- Margie Guyot

Whenever I'm out plein air painting, if I don't see anything interesting to paint, I find a vehicle of some kind.  At least they're big and reflective!  And don't think that because I've painted lots of cars that I find them easy to do!  No!  It's always a struggle.  I've just learned to control my panic.  Just stay calm and "measure" everything with my brush, find out where lines relate.  And I do lots of wipe-outs.  About halfway through this painting the rain stopped and the sun came out and things got exciting!

"Irish Hills, N. of Petoskey" -- plein air field study -- oil on stretched canvas 10x20" -- Margie Guyot

Not far from the truck painting site, I saw a sign for a development that never got off the ground.  No homes had been built.  It looked like a beautiful place, so I parked on the side of a hill and painted.  It was very windy and I could not use my BestBrella.  I was using a stretched canvas and the sunlight was shining through the back of the canvas, which was making it very difficult to see.  And the sun was glaring on my palette, confusing the situation even more.  My hat almost blew off several times.  Hmmmm.... let's see how many more excuses I can come up with!

An added bonus: when packing up to leave, I looked down on the ground.  Right by my car door was a huge Petoskey stone!  I had a small trowel in the car and managed to dig it out.  That thing has got to weigh 20 pounds!

"Emmet Heights Road"  plein air field study -- oil on birch panel 8x10" -- Margie Guyot

This was my favorite painting of the day (the 4th didn't photograph well).  I'm a sucker for this type of scene.  I especially appreciated the fact that I could stand in the blessed shade to paint it!  This was the last painting of the day and I was sunburned, exhausted, sweaty and glad to see an end to things! 

This road is on the way to an excellent musical instrument repairman, Paul Bianchi.  Our sax quartet knows it well!

I live 1 1/2 hours south of Harbor Springs, where the show opening was to be held.  All paintings were due framed and ready to hang by 5 PM.  I ended up going to a shady park and doing all my framing in the back of my Flex.  Some dude was sitting at a picnic table, reading with a radio turned on to loud rock music.  Ugh!  Then a motorcycle gang came through, but they were OK. 

I had no time (or energy!) to drive home, shower and gussy-up.  I looked ragged at the reception, but I really didn't care!  The truck painting won First Place! 

Was one tired puppy when I finally got home.  Unloaded everything, grabbed a beer and sank into the hot tub.  Ahhhhhh!  But I had to get out after about 5 minutes.  The mosquitoes were eating me alive!

more spring flowers

Still struggling to catch up on my posts!  Here are a few more spring flower paintings I did.  All were painted from life, in oils, on 6x6" stretched canvas.  Alas, no more tulips, daffodils until next spring....

June Iris

It's hot, windy and the Japanese beetles are everywhere outside, so I'm trying to catch up with my blog posts.  I'd been too busy painting for the past month.  This latest entry shows most of the iris I've painted in the past couple weeks.  Most are from the Iris Farm, west of Traverse City.  The 2 "black" iris popped up in my yard.  I don't think I could pick a favorite color, although the "black" ones were kind of fun, for a change.  It was heavenly, sitting in  my studio, painting these -- and smelling them. 

I've planted dozens and dozens of iris along both sides of my long driveway.  They're pretty much finished blooming, but when they were in bloom, the smell was unbelieveable!

All were painted from life, in oils, on 6x6" stretched canvas.

May Iris

Here it is, nearly mid-June and I'm almost a month behind on my posts!  Most of these iris came from the Iris Farm, west of Traverse City.  They began blooming 1 - 2 weeks earlier than last year.  They let visitors cut stems for $1 each.  Since it's been so uncomfortably hot, I just cut stems and brought them home to paint in my studio.

All are painted from life, in oils, on 6x6" stretched canvas.

Too bad I can't show you how good they smelled....