25 February, 2009

Plein Air - Tree on a Granite Bed

Counter-Clockwise from Bottom Right: Sketch, Color Study and Finished Work


This gives a flavor for the scenery in northeast Washington, with the pine tree growing among granite slabs. I am only now getting a break-through with my plein air work, I feel. What I learned from this work was the value of returning again to the same site to nail down a piece. Plein air doesn't have to be an instant success or a "do or die" thing.

Again, I surprised myself by getting it right over a gray ground, which has been trouble in the past.


Tree On a Rock Bed
August, 2008
@ 6" x 7"
Pastel
Casey Klahn

16 comments:

Tracy said...

Love this piece, Casey. Your palette here is wonderful.

Adam Cope said...

nice piece - strong composition.

any spot will have thousands of paintings; it's up to the artists to unearth them... and well, it's art not copying that counts isn't it.

paint on

Casey Klahn said...

Appreciate it, Adam & Tracy.

I am struggling through multiples from my last on site session - I know there are more artworks there, but I want each to one sing.

Jala Pfaff said...

Ooooh, I love this! It's like Dr.Seuss but as fine art.

Deborah Paris said...

Love this little piece. Great color harmony and feeling.

Loriann Signori said...

Wow Casey, look at that movement and feeling! Through use of color and shape you made this tree speak volumes. Nice.

Casey Klahn said...

Thanks to a whole panel of great artists - Jala, Deborah and Loriann.

All those sessions with Theodore Geisel...

Brian McGurgan said...

This is a nice, expressive tree, Casey, and I like your handling of the rocks as well.

Casey Klahn said...

Thanks, Brian. I go to Handell for how to do rocks.

Miki Willa said...

I keep coming back to this painting. The composition, colors, and strokes work so well, and make a powerful statement. Great painting.

Casey Klahn said...

Thanks, Miki.

I read all of your posts from the MCJ workshop - lucky you and thanks for blogging that!

Trevor Lingard said...

Hello Casey
A very suttle palette that appeals to my eye.
I find this piece very relaxing.
Kind Regards

Casey Klahn said...

Thanks, Trevor.

Dark yellow and violet are very sublime, IMO.

Jala Pfaff said...

Why have you had "trouble" (hard as that is for me to believe) with working on gray before?

Katherine Tyrrell said...

A very powerful piece

Casey Klahn said...

Thanks, Katherine! I didn't expect this attention for this piece, so it is a welcome thing.

Jala, I guess temperature is my weakest suit, since I focus on intensity instead.

Also, at some point one runs out of tooth, and a failure is "set".

So, overcoming the cool nature of the gray La Carte, vs. the Sienna which is my main paper, is a chore. The ones I have done lately seem to be fine, now. I see how the cunning placement of a few warms in the foreground do the trick, and also how my use of ultramarines (French) are better than any turquoise on this paper. Not rocket science, but I'm having fun.

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