Friday, January 23, 2009

Back to Fall

(The Medford Avenue Bridge, oil on mounted canvas, 12X16)

Smack in the middle of winter should bring inspiration for winter landscapes shouldn't it? Well I have had the urge for doing some winter landscape photography work but not painting...I'm not really sure why but maybe because I'm mentally stuck in "nicer" weather (sorry snow lovers).

One season I have never painted is Fall. Well, with one disclaimer, I painted a picture of my Grandfather picking corn back when I was 17...that was an autumn seasonal painting, but I really can't remember ever painting an autumn landscape. Thinking of that even seems odd to me because autumn was my favorite season for most of my life.

I finally finished my first fall landscape painting, it's of an old iron suspension bridge down in the Loess Hills...a location Georgie and I passed through this past fall on a photo excursion of sorts. I like old things and old bridges are kinda cool I think. This bridge has the nicest patina, an almost iron oxide red color to it and the contrast of the bridge with the autumn sky and the landscape just shouted "stop!" to us. I thought immediately that this had to be painted, so here we go.

I enjoyed this painting process...finally got to do an autumn scene and I love the color of that season so much. But I found I don't care a lot for the process of depicting man made objects with detail like this bridge; it was just too confining or restrictive...the shadow and the bridge planks were about the only liberating features. But sometimes you have to take the good with the not so fun to make something work.

*I'm not totally sure how to get back to the Medford Avenue bridge...I believe we were in Monona County at the time, but maybe our Loess Hills friends would help clue us in. Georgie and I usually keep pretty close tabs on where we are during these trips, but we were having so much fun we maybe weren't as careful that time?! (* I just located notes that Georgie wrote during that trip...see she knows what's goin' on! Medford Ave bridge is just north off of F50 4mi N and 1/2 mi E of Missouri Valley in Harrison County.)

With 30 mph NW winds howling through Prairie Hill Farm this winter afternoon at 10 degrees, I'm keeping warm thinking of sunny autumn days...


Re said...

Dad, that is beautiful! The details are amazing ( I thought it was a photo ). :O)

Prairie Painter said...

Well I wouldn't go that far Re but thank you for the comment :) If you click on the image it'll open a slightly larger file that I think shows it's not a photo.