Saturday, January 26, 2008

Still Holding On

Who loves nature?

We do! We do!
This is a picture I took at Tinley Creek Woods when it was much warmer and the snow had melted. What did I love about this scene? Many things:

First, this picture was taken this January, notice all the trees in the background have lost their leaves. This little guy held on to his. I stood there and thought about all the wind storms that came through this winter and I'm pretty impressed with the tree's strength, especially because he's standing in an open field all alone. Perhaps it is because of his youth that he is able to hang on or maybe the background forest is his shield, a row of soldiers. Maybe the forest is looking out for this little guy? The tree probably is still holding on to it's leaves because that's just the nature of an oak tree (boring), but it's much more fun to think of all other possibilities. I'm sure there's a life lesson in here somewhere.

Secondly, the detail in the trunk made me say, "Ooooo." I love it's "arms" reaching out near the bottom, searching for all possibilities in life.

Thirdly, warm colors in the dead of winter rock! My interpretation exaggerates this feature...I'm just whipping out my artistic license here.

Here is my translation of what was actually there. My main goal was to keep this little guy the focal point and not get him lost with a busy background, notice the blue forest (represents distance) and is shorter that actual photo.
I had a super difficult time attempting to draw any trees in the background, it was just shades of blue. I really thought I was going to ruin it by painting trees. Gary, who is a wonderful teacher, challenged me and said, "Do you always want to be stuck at this level?"
WOW, no I don't...growth is good!
Gary taught me to turn the painting upside down and get loose with the background. Dandy! It worked!

This pastel took a total of 5 hours to complete over a period of 2 days. It will be made available in a few days at

Hope you enjoyed!