Wednesday, November 28, 2012

"Connecticut Ave Bridge in Autumn Afternoon " (oil on linen; 8" x 16")

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Reference photo

On a beautiful autumn day ten days ago, my family had to drive to the Levine School of Music in Northwest in Washington, DC for my daughter's Suzuki flute Christmas concert rehearsal.  Instead of griping about missing the opportunity for plein air painting with friends, I took my camera with me to take pictures of Rock Creek Park in the car.

Yes, you've been there, clicking away your camera without even getting out of the car.  In my defense (I always have excuses!), it is impossible to pull over along the drive in Rock Creek Park.  Besides, the traffic was heavy, as seemingly everybody was out enjoying the spectacular weather.

I was mesmerized by the tall trees in brilliant autumn colors along the drive.  Since we were in the valley, only the crowns of these trees were lit by the late afternoon sun.  Fascinating!  We passed under several bridges until we hit Connecticut Avenue Bridge over Klingle Valley, more commonly known as the Klingle Valley Bridge.  It is a handsome Art Deco bridge near the National Zoo on Connecticut Avenue.  Marvelous!

I cropped the photo to make the composition more dramatic and proceeded to paint "Connecticut Avenue Bridge over Rock Creek Park."  The painting has the clear separation of the light and shadow families that Kevin Macpherson talks about in his book.  To exaggerate the sensation of a bright sunny day, I painted the area in the sun even lighter than in the photo.  Do you feel like you were there with me in the car wowing at the scenery?