Now that the snow is (finally) gone, I've spent the last few weeks going out almost daily, getting eaten alive by black flies and drawing, either in pastel or pencil. I've tried painting outside during this time of year, but I always end up dozens of insects stuck in the paint – a real nuisance! By the first week of July it's pretty easy to work outside, bug-free. I have also been stretching and priming a dozen canvases and looking forward to painting with green again. When I do these drawings, I focus on finding compositional and color relationships which may be developed into paintings later on, rather than "descriptive" information. Rather than bringing my big bag of expensive pastels, these are done with the remains (mostly very small pieces and crumbs) of my first pastel set, a set of 30 Rembrandt half sticks that I bought in 1999. Because of the rapidly changing light and the insects, I have to work very quickly. I do a lot of these types of drawings and it usually feels like I'm panning for gold. Usually I come up empty, but once in a while I get something that has promise. Here are a couple of those.
This is the old Henderson sheep farm that I've draw dozens of time over the past three years and which continues to give me inspiration. Lately, the sheep have been out en force, but they usually flee to the top of the hill as soon as they notice me.
This is the entrance to a field on the Carmichael Road, directly across from the two barrels that I painted last fall. I went back to this spot on three different days.
So this happened
9 months ago