Every landscape painting captures a specific moment in time. Did the wind just come up, making that distinct pattern across the surface of the water? How long has the sun’s tilt illuminated that particular branch, the hillside the tree stands on? Was the grass in the meadow that gorgeous russet color last week and how long will it stay that way before frost changes the palette?
Pastel painting has become a passion of mine. The medium of pastel is extremely alluring, as witnessed by the increasing number of enthusiastic practitioners. The rich and buttery colors that move so easily from one’s hand to the grainy surface; the immediacy of translating what one sees to the paper’s surface; the way one can fill in large areas or do an underpainting to get a reading of color, values and light before delving deeper into the details of the painting are all part of the pleasure.
I hope that people who look at my pastel landscapes will travel with me the paths and waterways that I’ve painted. I’ve tried to capture the unique story being told in nature’s terms, either with camera in hand for a later studio painting or by setting up an easel for a session en plein air.
“In wilderness is the preservation of the world” are the famous words of Henry David Thoreau. I believe that when we befriend a particular path through the woods, or a hidden lake or tumble of sand dune, when we return to favorite natural haunts looking closely for the familiar landmarks, we become invested in their preservation. Their story becomes part of ours.