I’ve been painting with a group studying with Jef Gunn, a landscape painter from Portland. Jef is a traditionalist of sorts; he loves the scenic, the awesome, the spectacular. Of which there is a lot near Portland. So my plein air work these days has been mostly the outer outdoors, with scarcely a tad of wonky city-scape.
The first few paintings I did with the group were so bad I can’t show them. My mind, however, has finally returned home, western Oregon with its fulgent greens. And I am working on skies, which have a slight resemblance to the void of the desert:
Storm on Sauvies Island, 12 x 16″, Oil on canvas, 2009
Jef isn’t the only one dragging me to beautiful places. Painting buddy Jane is fixated lately on getting near water, so she took me back to the Bishop’s Close, again. Much too much beauty!
Clouds at Bishop’s Close, 12 x 16″, Oil on board, 2009
I kept angling to paint some city with someone, but was always outvoted. Last Saturday’s group went to the Columbia Gorge. I lucked out, however, and found a way to insert some (somewhat wonky) human element into the landscape. Whew! I was beginning to worry.
Robins Island, the Columbia Gorge, 16 x 12″, Oil on board, 2009
Robins Island is just below the Bonneville dam, so while the greenery to the south is stunning, some of the power plant’s detritus inserts itself into the landscape. Of course, it’s that detritus or a similar sort, that allows me to be writing and recording this for all of you. –June