When You’ve Got the Blues…

This painting has a quirky history.  It began when a commission wasn’t going well.

When the commissioned painting was completed, a lot of paint remained on my palette.  Most of it was blue.

Spalding Inn, Whitefield, NHSo, I took another in-progress painting off the wall — one that needed a lot more blue — and I worked on it.

I’ve talked about this painting before.  I’d started it in December, to re-energize myself as an artist, when the commissioned work was faltering yet again.

The fun painting — as it was in December — is shown on the left.  It started as a good concept, but I wasn’t comfortable working on it much… not until the commission was completed.  (I like to finish what I start, and work in a logical sequence.  That’s probably a Virgo thing, or something like that.)

Late yesterday, with the commissioned painting declared finished and an “Oh, why not” attitude, I began painting on this moonlit landscape again.

Within three minutes, I stepped back and said, “Wow… that’s gorgeous!”

Spalding Inn, Whitefield, NHWith every pause, I felt better.  This painting sings. It’s rich with juicy colors, a rhythmic vision, and I think it conveys the awe and beauty of a moonlit night in the White Mountains of NH.

(The location is the Spalding Inn, in Whitefield, NH.)

I’m approaching it as a semi-abstract, and using a tonalist approach.  That is, the edges are soft, and the composition emphasizes light & dark (tones).

That’s the work (in progress) in the photo on the right.

Most of the canvas is finished.  I want to do a little more with the sky.  The trees around the hotel need to be softened.  And that white rectangle — actually blank canvas — will be filled with the blue of the hotel building.

The nuances of the colors aren’t fully visible in the photo.  For example, the most distant mountain is purple.  The moon is tinged with pale yellow, and the foreground has an almost lyrical mix of French ultramarine and pthalo blue areas.

It’s a lovely painting.

I’m relieved, delighted and thoroughly pleased.   This canvas reminds me of why I’m an artist, and the deep satisfaction of conveying a creative vision in art.

Also see the next stage of this painting – Small Changes – Big Differences.

Or, skip ahead to my finished painting of the Spalding Inn.

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