Cleaning Up the Work

Now that I’ve done the Concluding Remarks on the residency blog, I’ve been freed up to rework the paintings that have been hanging around the studio, looking neglected.

These are three from the residency trip, starting with one I did in Enterprise, Oregon, and then moving to the Petrified Forest.

Outside Enterprise, Oregon, 12 x 24″, oil on masonite, 2010

This first one is actually part of a set, which means that you’ll probably get to see it again. More on it when I get the other one worked over (which might mean that this one will be worked again!)

Route 66, Interstate 40, 12 x 12″, oil on masonite, 2010

This one was probably the most instantly popular with people at the Petrified Forest. It was painted at a pull-off, next to Interstate 40, where this old car has been reconstructed and set up on blocks. A Park Service employee saw me painting there in the parking lot and placed orange cones around me. She said that you never know when those motorcyclists will come charging through the lots without looking where they are going.

I fixed this one early Sunday because I need to send a print to another Park Service employee who said her boyfriend would love it. She wanted to buy it, but alas, I need it for a putative exhibit.

The Painted Desert from Pintado Point, 12 x 24″, oil on masonite, 2010

This is one of those paintings you can dab at forever. I finally decided to call it done. In early October, around 10 AM, if you drive north through the park, you round a curve and go over a bit of a hill, and there is the fabled Painted Desert in all its glory. Oddly enough, it isn’t nearly so spectacular earlier in the day, when the colors tend to be dimmer. And as the sun gets high in the sky, it washes out. I don’t think I ever saw it at sunset, having learned early  on that there are some things you don’t bother trying to catch — one of these is the glory of the 30 seconds of glow that sunsets can give.  So this is the Painted Desert at perhaps its second-best light.

I am also reworking a semi-abstract, from the St. Johns Bridge series as well as reworking another Enterprise piece. Reworking is like editing — it can be fun and rewarding, or extremely frustrating. I picked the fun ones to work on first. –June

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