Thursday, October 12, 2017

Autumn Abstraction


Autumn Abstraction, 10x10


My husband Peter has often remarked that I do my best paintings after I've driven for a long time, and he might be right.

The reason is that when I drive, I think about what I'm seeing and how I could paint it. What are the colors, and how would I mix them? What combinations of stroke and hue would I use to bring to the canvas the same sort of thing I am feeling when I look at the landscape?

This is what I do, mile after mile, while I'm driving, and I think it launches me into new territory, imbues me with new zeal, prompts me to try things that I might otherwise not try, or not even think to try.

On the drive north, I found myself drifting towards thoughts of abstraction, of painting the vivid colors and the pulsing, light-filled feeling of the trees and the autumn, more than painting each branch, each limb.

This is the first of these abstract landscapes. I am sure there are some of you saying, "Oh, no, what is she doing?" In fact, I've already had one similar reaction. I hope that some of you out there are saying, "Finally! She made the leap!"

***
Making it to Maine

I GREW UP in Connecticut, which is part of New England - but honestly, Connecticut never really felt like New England to me. Neither did Rhode Island or Massachusetts, places I also lived.

Nope. New England, to my mind, is basically Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont, and that's it.

There's just too much industry in Connecticut, Mass., and RI. There's too much wealth, too many new cars, too many McMansions - and real mansions!

"New England" has always had the ring of toughness to me. Tough climate, tough people, tough way of life. When we lived in Maine, all that seemed true - sometimes too true.

I was delighted to leave Massachusetts, cross the tongue of New Hampshire that licks the Atlantic, and find myself in Maine.

I never want the hell of another Maine winter, but I have to say, it's heaven being here in the fall.
Top, I cheered when I crossed into Maine. Second from top, downtown Kennebunk.
Above, a lobster truck in Kennebunk. Might be closed for the season.

The evening sun lights up an autumn field in Arundel.
This is the kind of stuff I love to paint - the small scenes by the side of the road that enrich the landscape of the area, and might go unnoticed most of the time.

Above, a salt marsh in Cape Neddick.

***
Dog of the Day

He was guarding his home, near Waterboro, when I caught him looking at me.
He was interested, but knew enough to not investigate, though I do wish he had.

***
A Final Thought

"Winter is an etching, spring a watercolor, summer an oil painting
and autumn a mosaic of them all."

  • - Stanley Horowitz


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