new painting: July off the No. 9

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Good morning,

Second last week of August here. After crowing in my last post about the good air quality we are now socked in by a pretty nasty mass of orange grey forest fire smoke. I am feeling a bit sorry for myself as this necessitated the postponement of a visit by a few of my cherished Brisbane besties, while also putting the kibosh on riding and hiking until it is cleared out. Rain is scheduled for this weekend though, and that is good news. And it WILL happen. I know this because there is also the last of the outdoor concert series this weekend. In SP, outdoor concert = heavy rain. Its a fact. You get live music or you get good weather. Not both.

I am using this indoor time to finish off a little project for a friend who is moving with her family to live on a boat in a beautiful country. I am a little awed by the immensity and bravery of this move, and a little sad that we will lose their company, if only for a few years. When you live in a place this small and relatively isolated, friends often become family and a lifeline, and these lovely people are all three to many here on the mountain.

This friend told me recently that she would like a little painting to put up in her catamaran… something that will remind her of her home here. With that in mind I did up this little painting of the view from one of the hikes to Tod Lake. On a path called “No. 9” one has a steep but at least shaded ascent to the lake, with lovely rolling views at every step. I will get this framed up and hope she likes it. It was definitely made with a lot of love and best wishes for their adventure.

The exercise was very interesting as well. It has been a long time since I have done such a small painting. It makes every brush stroke count all the more, and really throws into sharp relief a person’s painting challenges. I am a bit tortured by its thick lines and an over reliance on black which adds a heaviness that doesn’t really jive with the lightness of the place itself and how I am trying to depict it. I resolve, then, that in my next painting I will not have a tube of black paint anywhere near me and stick to making the foundation painting in a medium tone. In the meanwhile, I am tempted to try this little guy again as a bit of a study. Maybe I will fish around today for another small board. If I do, I will post it here for comparison’s sake.

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“July off the No. 9” (Acrylic on board, 22.5 x 30cm)
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