My most detailed painting yet…

My family and I recently visited the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the National Gallery.  I went looking for the best art that I could find and for inspiration to turn in a new direction with my work.  The impressionists excited me with their colorful light effects as usual and Joaquin Sorolla and John Singer Sargent dazzled me with their expressive brushwork, but the paintings that knocked my socks off this time were those of the Frederic Edwin Church.  In particular, the painting “Dream of the Andes,” has me staring for… well, I don’t know how long but, thank you Lauren, Ellie and Quinn for being so patient with me in art museums.  What blew me away was the incredible detail. He beautifully designed every fern in the forest, every termite in the trees, and the painting goes back into space at least ten miles.  Now I’m trying to paint a painting with exquisite detail.  I’m not at his level yet, but I’m happy with how it is progressing.   Here are the sketches for now… one from memory in the sketchbook and then a plein air color study.  MoreMesaBreathe-Gleason - 2

Summer Beach Day-Campus Point

18×24″ oil on canvas panel– We’re so lucky during heat waves like this to have the ocean so near.  The water today at Campus Point was filled with people cooling off in the surf.  I hope you are all finding ways to stay cool today… Here is a watercolor sketch from the same site down below on the beach a couple of weeks ago.  

The Path to Sands Beach

Towards Devereux Point-Gleason - 115×30″ Oil on Canvas Panel– The weather has been perfect for heading to the beach lately once the morning marine layer evaporates off…  When the grey clears today I bet it will find hundreds of people off work for the Fourth of July playing in the waves.

Summer Morning at Lake Los Carneros

 16×20″ oil on canvas– I was pleased with how the colors came out on this one– I actually painted over a painting that I never had time to finish and since the value structure and design were already in place, I could focus entirely on the temperature and subtle changes between all the different blues, yellows and greens in the scene.

Radiant Sunset– Big Pine Camp

16×36″ oil on canvas– This was a sunset to remember… layers of mountains dissolving in to the light and particularly speedy clouds racing and changing colors across the sky.  Thirty minutes earlier and the day was still afoot– a thirty minutes later and the stars were glowing behind the clouds.  This area burned eleven years ago in the Zaca Fire and it has beautifully risen from the ashes like a true phoenix.  Nice work, mother nature… : )