Monday, April 28, 2014

Juniper Swamp Rd, and a sketch @ Turnpike

60  F  Sunny with a few high clouds, a bit of wind.
Today I went up to Juniper Swamp rd. in Shushan, I've painted this exact scene a number of times, I'll try to find them.  There is not that's man-made in the, the road and the clearings, but otherwise very low presence.

#286 Juniper Swamp Rd.

12 x 16


I had the shade on my canvas, and it was bright, like yesterday, so I started with the sky, the brightest thing in the scene.

I've loved these pure pastoral scenes because they lend themselves to abstractions, the elements form horizontal, vertical and diagonal lines and shapes and great potential for compositions.

Finally some green I can dig my teth into!  It's still a light and muted green, keeping it down was a bit tricky!

This painting was very strait forward for me, when does that happen?

I waited to do the foreground bush, because it was on top of everything else.....

Getting close...  It helped knowing the scene I wanted from the start, that doesn't happen very often.

1 1/2 hours of actual paint time. The light changed only when clouds went over so it was easy......

  Sight size view.


I did this oil sketch on paper earlier in the day, I'm excited about doing small quick sketches like this, and offering them for about $100, I can do one and a small painting, and let it be real immediate, we'll see what happens!

$285 turnpike Rd.
5 1/2  x 5 3/4
Oil on paper
$80, unframed


  1. Very nice post, and super painting. What type of paper do you use for these oil sketches? Do you gesso it first....and I guess it has to be framed under glass once dry? Hope you don't mind the questions, but i'm still trying to come to grips with all the nuances of oils.

  2. Thanks Maggie, I'm happy to answer questions! I prepare the paper (arches) by soaking it in shellac, it was a process I heard about years ago, and I;m just starting to get into it, so I'm learning too!

    1. Thanks..... just regular watercolour paper and shellac...interesting. How about Arches watercolour board and then coating that with shellac....would be more like a thin panel. I use Arches HP watercolor board all the time with gesso for really small paintings and it's easy to cut.

  3. A wonderful landscape and a very good painting! Personally, I love those spots without any human intervention on it, I feel like running into your painting and walking and having a pick-nick on the grass... I see my dog very happy there...
    (But of course, your paintings with bridges and other elements made by humans are interesting too...)

  4. Chani, I left an open space to the left of the foreground bush so you and your pooch could go have a pick nick and wander the far hills! These scenes were my all time favorite, but rivers and bridges and other decaying industrial sites have something I'm fascinated with....

  5. I love painting this way if I can find the time especially during the winter season here in Southwest Florida. During season is when I am the busiest and have to wait until the spring and summer mornings or evenings after the seasonal residents go back North as that's when I finally get a few breaks in between. Love reading your posts even though I don't comment much.

    1. Thanks for your comment Arthur; I'm always interested in where this blog goes, and am happy you've enjoyed it! I wish you the best of luck painting in Florida, it's a beautiful state, I've visited a few times... let me know if you have any of your paintings posted, I'd be happy to see them, Matt

  6. Congratulations on a beautiful painting - and alla prima to boot! You may have heard of Arches paper for oil - it requires no preparation, has a pebbly texture, can be mounted on board either before or after you've painted on it. Comes in all manner of sizes including rolls. Interestingly, when you block in using thin paint, it looks a bit like a watercolor and invites experimentation. But it's an oil and therefore requires no glass.

    1. Thanks Saul, I've heard about arches oil, just have't tried it, yet.

  7. Thanks again Matthew for your great progress images. I'm going to share this with my group.

  8. You're very welcome, I'm always interested in where this blog goes, and who reads it, Thanks for sharing!