Once again I lead off with a nude. I love my nudes. This was today’s. You probably recognize the model. Our Saturday group got cancelled by the snowstorm and my painting from Tuesday is not finished, so it’s the only nude I have for you today. (We have Tuesday’s model again this week, so I will finish that one up and post it before I leave for Florida for two weeks.) I am not sure that I will be able to keep to my Monday blogging schedule while I am down in Florida, but I should be able to post photos of the paintings from time to time.
Today I finally noticed why I sometimes see shadows as orange. When it’s cold in the studio, we used a space heater to keep our model comfortable. The heater glows orange. Her breast looked as if it were on fire yesterday. That was the clue. But it doesn’t explain other orange shadows, the ones on the other side from the heater. Maybe it’s simply what I see, after having one cataract removed. Can’t wait for the other one to go.
I also loves me some landscapes. Without a Saturday Life Group session, I was unleashed to paint a landscape. Ever since the Eric Aho exhibit, I’ve had this notion that I too could paint an abstract landscape if I simply gave myself permission . Turns out, it’s not that easy. I have, in the past, made paintings that look abstract–well, only two, to be exact. One happened in a magical state of unconscious creativity (as seen in hindsight, of course), and the other’s subject matter was inherently abstract. “Spirit Lake” is the former; the name I gave it may be a subconscious bow to the process that created it. Click here to go to my web page showing Spirit Lake.
The inherently abstract one was a close up view of the mangrove swamp in the Ding Darling National Wildlife Preserve.
So Saturday I taped up a 16×20 piece of oil primed linen on a drawing board, and got out a volume of spectacular photographs by Tim Palmer, of some of the most spectacular scenery in existence. I met Tim some years ago at a Sierra Club meeting, and told him I wanted to use his photographs as inspiration for paintings, and he gladly gave me permission to do so. His book, titled “Luminous Mountains: The Sierra Nevada of California”, had been waiting patiently in my studio all these years to be put into service. I opened the book and did not get further than the frontispiece, a magical scene titled “Volunteer Mountain, Yosemite, at Sunset.” I tried valiantly not to paint the photograph, but I’m sorry to report, my product is not very abstract. Not abstract at all.
It’s also earthier, less magical, than the photograph. Isn’t that strange? I may try again, next time limiting my palette–no blues or greens allowed.
I also took the Saturday opportunity to modify, perhaps improve, the frigid plein air paintings of a few weeks ago. I actually made something of that first effort in the windy, subzero meadow off Route 302.
The scene of the Jackson church needed some cleaning up, and fresh whites (actually not pure white, but white with a tiny bit of yellow). Compare:
The differences are perhaps too subtle to show up in this medium, same as a photograph can never do justice to a painting, unless it is printed as a giclee and there is nothing between you and the giclee print. (No digital interface, e.g.)
Aline Lotter is currently exhibiting:
at the Hatfield Gallery in Manchester (Langer Place, 55 S. Commercial St., Manchester, NH); at the Bartlett Inn in Bartlett; at the Red Jacket Inn in North Conway; at her law offices at 41 Brook St in Manchester; and at her studio by appointment.
In February, you can also view (and purchase–of course!) some of my paintings and drawings at the McGowan Gallery in Concord, NH, (“Love, Lust and Desire” is the theme) and my 6×6’s at the Artstream Gallery in Rochester, NH.
If you happen to be near Orlando, Florida on February 14, 15 or 16, or Tampa, Florida on March 7, 8, and 9, you could (and should) catch Nude Nite, happening with music and other entertainment at these locations, respectively: 639 W. Church St. (blue freestanding warehouse just East of I-4) in Orlando; and 3606 E. 4th Ave., in Tampa. Hours are 6 pm to midnight. (Nude NITE, after all)
Liked your model’s color. Also viewed the ? Lake. Very interesting take on an ordinary subject.
I don’t think this particular Lake was ordinary at the time, despite the fact that I have forgotten its name and location. Also, I was blessed with a rather abstract photograph, so I shouldn’t take credit for making the painting almost abstract. But thank you SO much for your comments–I always value them enormously.
Your paintings of Athabasca Falls are beautiful Aline. I had seen one on your header and wondered if it was yours. They remind me of the early American ‘heroic’ paintings which were all about the grandeur of the landscape, the majesty and beauty of it all. I love your Path travelled up too.
Thank you for your comments. I have two paintings of Athabasca Falls, both taken from photographs that I took, and the two photographs were taken minutes apart, but with different settings. I kind of got the feeling that you have actually been there yourself. Path Travelled Up is also from that trip to Alberta–it marks the spot where my path was terminated by an avalanche. Not when I was there–previously. I’m so glad I did all that hiking about when I was still able to. That was a time for hiking and photographing. Now is a time for painting.