Madrone Madness #8

Madrone and Co. on Saunders 200# 11 x 14 inches

I was high jacked this morning by the light and my trees. of course I obliged, willingly. I am in love with Fabriano but for abstracts like this, I love the softness of Saunders 200# and I can’t wait to try out Fabriano Soft Press in which Debi Riley raves about. As soon as I can manage it, I will be buying it. This is my first painting session with my madrones here: Madrone Madness-June WC #1 as you can see, I am getting looser and improving, I hope!

I am finding that I love to use my sprayer while painting to help coax the paint and to limit brush strokes. I do use my brush to drop in paint or use the very tip to push/brush the paint to make the trunks of the trees stand out. I also have found that allowing the excess water from my brush to drop into the paint mixture I had just put down, helps to lighten that area. I love this way of painting, it is truly me. Abstraction is something I love and I am hoping to incorporate it more and more into my plein air of the river. I try so hard to depict what I see and I usually overdo it or bungling it up, I have used this kind of  painting at the river before and I loved the results,  Shenanigan Flat-North Yuba River with painting #3.

P1110684 (2).JPG
close-up of one of my favorite areas
My scene before the glow that I chased

Learning Points:

  • With abstracts such as these, incorporate all kinds of means to get the job done, think outside the box.
  • For me, limiting actual brushstrokes work best for abstraction.
  • Plein air is hard but when it is happening, it is heaven!
  • Don’t be afraid to let that paint flow or let those colors mingle, who knows what you will end up with?
  • Adventure keeps you young!
  • Wet paint from the tube is best for abstraction.

26 thoughts on “Madrone Madness #8

    1. thank you! I loved painting it so much, it felt like a really good romantic time with the hubby….lol hopefully he doesn’t read this post, he’ll be jealous! As to the paper….darn….I hope that my correction made it? I originally thought it was Arches until I took a closer look and it is Saunders so I had to edit my post. Well, I think it all depends on where you get your paper, you can try to beat the price by searching for the site that sells it for the cheapest. I actually now spend less money on my paper because I buy it through Dick Blick. I think that anything cheaper than Arches you would be losing out in the long run. I haven’t found a Canson that I have liked and I don’t even want to bother with Strathmore. I know it is expensive but so worth your outcome. I help my expense by flipping failed paintings over and paint on the other side.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. oh I certainly WANT to DO more than I do!! thats why I ‘travel’ with you, hiking and looking at your river I think. another thing about soft press, is its not one for lots of glazes/layers like Arches. gosh, I must go find some soon! lol

        Liked by 1 person

  1. dawnmarie

    Margaret!!!! I didn’t read your post, just looked at the pics and I want to say bam!!!! You got it. I really love those. Those colors, the blending in the colors, just a great job all the way around. Don’t you love it when that happens?

    Liked by 1 person

      1. dawnmarie

        Well, that seems to be exactly what happened here. Beautiful oranges and blues. I blew that sucker up on my computer and looked at those pigment deposits and loved every minute of it.

        Liked by 1 person

      1. I can so much identify with your statement “I come alive with abstraction”. Have you read the books by Rolina van Vliet? It shows gorgeous abstracts and provides well structured advice.
        But abstracts are HARD! So be kind with yourself – it may help when you are “faced with the river” to do some charcoal sketches in a large format, capturing the line, light and shadow only in broad strokes, and then later in the studio reproduce this in watercolor so you can choose color based on emotion/memory and you do not feel so constrained by the “model” (river)?
        Whatever you do, keep pushing ahead, each painting takes you further into yourself, doesn’t it?

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Thank you so much by responding with further observation. I will look up Rolina Van Vliet…never heard of her. Ha! I do believe that you are onto something! Okay, just the other day down at the river….lol I won’t break out singing….I was wondering why is it that I can’t grasp and run with my hearts’ desire to abstract and pull emotion and “beyond” what I am looking at? you nailed it! of course I had this idea run through my head, that I am faced with the river…period. To depict or not to depict….literally. I totally love your idea and I will try it out not just once but many times because as you well know it takes a lot of work to get a new idea or approach ironed out and working smoothly. Fritz, thank you so much! I needed a little nudge and a new perspective and you provided that.


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