Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Inexpressible Joy, the 6-month painting

Inexpressible Joy © 2007 Karen Mathison Schmidt
24 x 18 • acrylic on 2" cradled Gessobord • sides painted dark umber

Yep, we all have ’em ... that project that gets started with a gung-ho enthusiasm (“... this is gonna be great!”) and then for some reason or other gets pushed aside for just a bit ... then weeks, months, years. It seems the longer these projects go unfinished, the harder it is to pick them up again. This painting, which I started in May, has been lurking around the edges of my to do list since June. Here’s a detailed description of the first progress photos.

After the muted chilly morning grays of Anticipating Flagstaff I felt like doing something really bright and sunny, so I painted Oak Tree on Ratcliff Street (I still need to get a final photo of that one to show you) and then I pulled this one out, dusted it off and dived into luscious color!

One of the things I miss about our old neighborhood in town is all the wonderful front yard gardens ... I love day lilies, and these particular ones were out in full force last May, right around the corner from our place. When this painting first appeared in my blog, I pointed out the lively sweeping motion of the picture; it just seems so joyful to me ... hence, the title!

More work in progress photos; this first one was my starting point.

When working on a picture like this one that might have a tendency to look busy, I have to step back from the easel pretty often to make sure that the composition as a whole is still making sense, and has clear overall areas of light and shadow. Toward that end, I build up all the areas as I go along, as you can see from the progress photos (rather than starting at one end and finishing my way across),

Here are some details:


Kelley MacDonald said...

This piece takes my BREATH away - please tell me I don't say that on all your pieces! I really feel like they're 'lit from within'. Probably reflects your glowing personality! :) Very beautiful.

Karen Mathison Schmidt said...

Oh, Kelley, what a great compliment! I do think you have the gift of encouragement ... thanks so much!

Helen Read said...

Beautiful! Karen, I tagged you on my blog. Don't feel you must participate... I did add a link on mine to yours. If you'd prefer not, please let me know!

Melanie said...

hello friend! Sorry it's been so long since I've posted... life is just nuts, I know you can relate :)
As always, your paintings are beautiful.. and I can definitely relate to the 'six month painting'... good for you for diving into it again, I always find that incredibly hard.
God bless you and yours - I hope your Thanksgiving was wonderful and that the upcoming holidays are even better!