Sundown, pastel, 17 x 23
A friend saw this new pastel and emailed to say that it reminded him of his youth in Monticello, a small town in upstate New York. It brought back good memories, he told me.
Sundown is a painting I begun a few years back, inspired by the memory of an afternoon drive through California’s San Joaquin Valley in the early 90’s. Using a broad, nylon brush I began by staining a sheet of Wallis (white) pastel paper with watercolor in a cool, blue-green hue. [Note this ‘underpainting’ appears throughout the work, but is especially obvious in the shadow areas, for example in the body of the central tree]Once the watercolor dried I began teasing-out my recollection. As I did, other arresting moments of a similar kind came to mind to influence the work’s early development. Something interrupted me finishing Sundown and it remained unfinished, filed away out of sight for a long time. That much time away from an unfinished idea can often break my connection to–and interest in–a piece. In the case of Sundown the challenge to revisit and explore remained strong.
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