Sunday, September 29, 2013

Two Views: Safe Harbor and Red Boat Reflections

Often, there are several different paintings that can come from one photograph.  This particular view of Vernazza, Italy, inspired two paintings for me, focusing on different aspects of the same scene.
In Safe Harbor, I cropped the original photograph to emphasize movement.  I liked the diagonal lines that start with the reflection near the bottom right and zigzag through the boats, up to the walkway on the top right, and across the plaza to the left.
My challenge with this composition was to gently bring the viewer's eye back to the foreground.  My solution was to emphasize the reflections of the buildings and umbrellas to vertically connect back to the boats.  Here is Safe Harbor, 20x20 Oil:
After the first painting, I decided I liked the reflections so much that I wanted to paint the scene again, but with the focus primarily on the boat reflections.  I chose a long, horizontal format and cropped the image for my 18x36 canvas like this:
Here's the result ...another point of view.  Red Boat Reflections, 18x36 Oil

Both of these paintings are currently available at The Little Art Gallery.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Blossoms in Italy

Yesterday, my husband and I joined my wonderful family in the celebration of my cousin Nancy's wedding day.  And so, in honor of Nancy and Vinny, I am posting the wedding gift they received from us.

Knowing that their Italian lineage is pretty strong (yes, I know the Irish is strong too, Mom :), I chose one of my favorite new little pieces that was painted from a photo taken during our 25th anniversary trip to Italy.  This doorway in Asciano was so enticing with its shadows, flowers, and texture that I couldn't resist painting it (twice!)  For this little painting I chose to crop the scene and focus on the doorway and the flowers to the left. 
I moved the flowers a bit to the right so that they connected and overlapped the door because I loved the contrast of soft and strong with the flowers and doorway.  There is so much symbolism here for a marriage, but what speaks to me most is how our differences can complement in a way that makes the "whole" more beautiful ...  blossoms and brick ... sunlight and shadow ... soft and strong.  The door is ready to be opened to possibilities and also represents our God, who makes all things possible.  I am the door; if anyone enters through Me, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.  Jn 10:9

Blossoms in Italy, 7x5 Oil

Here it is, framed:
And here is the happy couple, Vinny and Nancy.  Congratulations!

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Lake Lynn Morning

In honor of Labor Day, what could be a more relaxing way to start the day than with a morning walk around a peaceful lake?  

I usually walk around Lake Lynn at the "magic hour" when the evening sun makes the shadows and colors crisp and dramatic, but on this rare early stroll I was rewarded with delicate veils of a misty morning as the backdrop to the peak of autumn colors.

I painted Lake Lynn Morning as I remembered it, not as the camera captured it.  To me, the orange leaves of the maples danced in dramatic contrast to the distant neutral blue.  It took my breath away.  Have a relaxing Labor Day ...