Sunday, March 18, 2012

"Magnolia Season" (oil on linen; 10" x 8") sold


Reference photo

As I mentioned the other day, I went to see what's happening at Green Spring Gardens Park on Tuesday afternoon in Alexandria, VA.  It was beautiful, so I went back on Thursday morning.  As spring is unfolding in a fast forward mode this year, I am trying to keep up.  The picture above was taken during my second visit.  I was both excited and nervous at the prospect of painting saucer magnolias.

"Whiff of Spring" (watercolor, 20" x 14")
click here to buy

Why nervous?  Because I haven't painted them before in oil, although, as you can see above, I have tackled these flowers in watercolor in the past.  "Whiff of Spring" is dear to me, not just because it had received an award in a show.  It is subtle, geometric, and reminds me of the Italian painter Giorgio Morandi, who obsessively painted bottles all his life.  It was a class exercise with Deborah Ellis, who wanted her students to paint white paintings.

Having said all of that, I must also admit that "Whiff of Spring" has the pretentious, contrived look!  It is the kind of pompous paintings one may see in a museum.  (My apologies to dear Deborah, who is one of my favorite art teachers.)  These days, I would rather paint flowers in a garden, basking in the sun.  Honestly, which do you prefer, "Whiff of Spring" or "Magnolia Season"?

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