Afterglow

Afterglow Lake Tahoe Afterglow, Lake Tahoe, pastel, 12×18
 

Last month I posted about my planning for a sunset painting of Lake Tahoe which I have titled, “Afterglow, Lake Tahoe”. As I look at the image on my computer, I think the subtle colors don’t always translate from what I see in the actual painting. The challenge for me was depicting the lake with its gentle waves as they approached the shore. Also, the nuances of color needed to interpret the scene were another issue.

With a critical eye, I think that the painting interprets the feeling and glow that attracted me to the scene. I do think that there might be more visual interest in the foreground. My resident art critic husband always questions the lack of wildlife in my work. But, I often think that the meditative or Zen quality doesn’t require this addition. If I had to critique the composition, I might have preferred to paint in a more elongated landscape ratio, rather than the standard 12×18 that I used.

Lake Tahoe Test

Lake Tahoe Test

Test Strip and Reference Photo for” Lake Tahoe Afterglow”

To plan my color palette for a new pastel painting,  I began testing colors of various pastel sticks on a strip of  Uart 400 sanded pastel paper. It seemed like a natural approach to interpret a narrow strip from the reference photo. Later, I realized that testing the exposure in a narrow strip was a method that I used in black and white darkroom photography many years ago. It also seemed to translate into planning a pastel painting.

The reference photo was captured on the north shore of Lake Tahoe one October evening just after the sun had slipped  behind the mountains. My challenge in this painting will be to capture the afterglow in the sky and the reflected color on the lake.  I plan to emphasize the landscape format using  non standard dimensions.  I will post more on the painting when it is complete.

 Technical Notes: Pastel brands – NuPastel, Rembrandt, Sennelier, Schminke, Terri Ludwig. Uart 400 Pastel Paper.

 

Next Trip Around the Sun

"Lake Tahoe Sunset", 19x25, pastel “Lake Tahoe Sunset”, 19×25, pastel
It is a new year and with it comes a new show. I am part of a group show at the Danville Theatre Art Gallery that opens on January 9 and runs through February 28, 2015. The show features my work and that of fellow pastel artists Ruth Hussey, Mark Mertens, Pat Suggs, Debbie Wardrope. The theme of the show is “Romantic Expressions in Pastel.” Whether or not my work is viewed as “romantic” will be the judgement of the viewers. But, I do know that I need to feel a tug of the heart to commit to a painting and all that is involved.
“Lake Tahoe Sunset” was inspired by the view from the overlook on the Mt. Rose highway between Incline Village and Reno last October. It was an ‘ah-ha’ moment when viewers stopped and took in the magical display of light and color in the sky and on the lake. My reference photo served to remind me of it. I used Sennelier La Carte sanded paper which seems to work well for the clouds in the sky. My pastels included a variety of Unisons, Terry Ludwigs, Giraults, Rembrandts, and NuPastels.