Mustard and Mt. St. Helena
I've finally resolved this little painting of one of my favorite views in Calistoga! (I first painted it in a different palette and on a very different scale – at 36"x 48" – in Mustard and the Mountain.) I'd begun it some months back, posting the various stages of its development on Facebook, until I needed to stop. I'd altered the sky from yellow to blue (as part of a development I'd expected), when the painting announced that it wanted the sky to be much deeper and redder. (Yes, sometimes paintings do that – and it's always a good idea to listen to them.)
The red glaze was too red, but – ooooh – it was lovely. I lightened it, but the painting wanted just a little more of that beautiful glaze. I'm sorry I didn't photograph that final, lovely glaze - which was a radiant coral red. I knew the sky wouldn't stay that way, but I needed to live with that color for awhile before I was ready to let go of it.
The final stage of Mustard and Mt. St. Helena combines hints of that vivid, luminous coral glaze with the orange and yellow glow of a sunset sky. This is the third time I've painted this view, and each time the beauty of the place astounds me all over again.
I'm giving a painting demonstration in Santa Rosa, California, on Wednesday for the Artists' Round Table, a Sonoma County art organization that meets monthly and features painting demonstrations, much like the Napa Valley Art Association. I'll be bringing this painting, along with some others, as one of my examples of my work. Now to decide what else to bring along....
11/17/2013 09:50:55 am
Any plans to do a similar presentation at the Napa library? And I wonder if you have any particular taste for, or experience creating, woodblocks?
11/18/2013 05:34:41 am
I don't have any current plans to do that - I didn't realize that the Napa library scheduled painting demonstrations? Is this something they typically do connected with the art shows there?
11/18/2013 07:07:38 am
I do not know if the Napa library does art demonstrations per se, but they do have artist talks, as you probably knew long before I did. My own favorite American woodblock artist is Barry Moser, in Massachusetts, but I will be sure to look out for Michael Schwaberow's work.
12/1/2013 04:28:57 pm
My apologies for not responding before now! I've been working like mad, and am only beginning to attempt to catch up on email and my blog. Thank you for suggesting the Napa library! The St. Helena library also offers artist talks in conjunction with shows. I'm probably too late for their 2014 schedules, but I'll look into it.
12/7/2013 12:40:06 pm
I appreciate your alerting us to Micah Schwaberow and Rik Olson. I checked out Schwaberow's work on Grand Hand, and liked what I saw. I will look into Rik Olson, too. I happened on a children's book by Christopher Wormell (Mice, Morals and Monkey Business, a version of Aesop) with (to me) dazzling illustrations that I would guess are not woodblock, but certainly look like woodblock. My guess is that there is an app for that, and I would love to find it. I thought that you and other colorists would like Wormell's work, too -- bold, energetic, and balanced. I wonder if you like the paintings of Tamara de Lempicka? Those philanthropists at Copperfields offer a fine Taschen collection of her work on the remainders table for the price of a mediocre lunch. I have never seen any of her paintings other than in books.
1/6/2014 07:19:50 am
You are welcome! (My apologies for not responding sooner; I was down with a cold and am only now beginning to catch up on everything.) I just got Pacific Union College's spring events calendar in the mail, and found an exhibition of Rik Olson's work listed - this month, at the Rasmussen Art gallery on campus. His opening reception is on Saturday, January 18th, and the show runs through February 8th. It says that he has studied with Barry Moser, too!
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Karen Lynn Ingalls
I am an artist in Napa and Sonoma Counties, in California. I paint colorist landscapes of rural California, teach art classes and lessons, and live in Calistoga, California. I also teach private, group, and corporate art workshops in Napa Valley, Sonoma County, and other parts of Northern California.