There it is! My 30 days of summertime paintings are done! Yesterday was another hot day and I could not bring myself to sit out on the street, so here is the view from my shady patio. Today is going to be even hotter than yesterday, so I am glad I am done for now. It was a very interesting 30 days. Very different from the painting in the spring. Painting every single day means you don’t get to pick the optimal weather conditions for painting, you paint in all of it or you make it work somehow. The hottest days were the hardest, even though I was always longing for sunny views to paint. And I don’t think I’ve ever dealt with ants while painting before; there were two days of the 30 where I had ants crawling up my legs and into my paint–yesterday on the patio was one of them. So now I will plan for my next project and hopefully keep painting regularly in the meantime–it is too easy to let days and weeks slip by without doing any painting. And I need to keep painting.
Yesterday I painted my front flowerbed, which was trickier than I thought. The groundcover Sedum is in full bloom right now and it is super bright yellow. And many of my Hen and Chicks are about to flower–they are those tall weird cactus looking plants. Lately I sit at this spot a lot to watch and photograph the bees, who are all over the Sedum and the tall blueish purple Speedwell plant, and yesterday while painting by the front walk I got to chat with a few neighbors as they walked by. Putting a patio and flowerbeds in my front yard has been the best thing for getting to know my neighbors.
This is the July 3rd painting–a very quick study of the patio. I had come home from an evening shift and I didn’t start the painting soon enough–the light was gone before I was finished. I was focussing on all the evening light and shadows so as soon as the light was gone it was a very different looking scene. I decided to leave it as a quick study then try to change the painting. Though the more I look at it now, the more I like it.
Yesterday I finally painted another back alley painting. For many days I kept going out to the alley to see if it was a good day to paint it, but it was always in full blazing sun. In the springtime I was able to sit in the shade of my fence and paint the alley between noon and 2 pm. Now there is no shade until after 4 pm. So that’s when I went out to do this one and it was a super hot and hazy day so I’m very glad that I waited for shade to sit in. My other alley painting was a horizontal composition and I had meant to get more of the power lines in, but I ran out of room, so this time I did a vertical composition. Here is the spring painting–very different light in the two paintings.
And here is yesterday’s painting. This is my shade garden and the side gate on the other side of my house that I have not painted before. I lucked out with this one as it had been threatening to rain all day, and just before I finished the painting, the sun popped out and made some nice shadows on the fence and wall that finished off the painting nicely. Soon after I finished up and went inside, it finally did start to rain–I’m so glad I didn’t hold off on getting the painting done to see if the rain would pass first.
My painting from the day before yesterday (June 30th). I have to catch up my blog again. This was done on a work day so I painted the neighbor’s crabapple tree as seen from my deck. There weren’t many flower blossoms on the tree this year, but it looks like there will still be a lot of apples. And their aspen tree that is beside the crabapple did not get any leaves this year. I hope it has not died–I loved their aspen trees and hearing them rustling in the wind.
I went back over to the treed area near our house today. I’m surprised there isn’t more bits of stuff stuck in this painting because it was super windy and a lot of dirt got into my paints. And this giant spider kept climbing into my bag. I got him out only to find him crawling up my leg later on, making me drop my painting and flip my chair over. It must have been entertaining for anyone watching me paint. Between the spider, and the ants crawling on my sandaled feet, and the dirt in my palette this felt like a bit of a frantic painting and I was glad to be finished. Though it’s a good thing I was done a bit earlier today because about ten minutes after I got home it clouded over, and it looks like the rain that is forecast for today is about to start. I painted almost this same view in the spring and it’s neat to see how much the trees and shrubs obscure the houses now.
I went to the park today and found a new view to paint. This park is really long–it spans a few city blocks–and there is a playground at one end, then an offleash dog area and pathway in the middle, and then this open area where the playground used to be at the far end. I was at the far end today, but in a new spot that I have not painted from before. A man came up from the commercial buildings down below to see my painting, which was nice; I was so much in the zone that I did not notice him until he was right behind me. It was a gorgeous day and I set myself up in the shade of a spruce tree because it was so hot. I am finding that I am doing that more often–looking for a shady spot to paint from. I also not only brought my little folding chair, but one of my deck cushions as well to sit on. I must be getting old because sitting outside for an hour or two to paint now makes me sore. I remember when I used to just sit on the ground and sometimes I would even just crouch down for an entire painting. Those were the days.