Monday, July 25, 2011


Tool Shed at the Cabin Oil, 6" x 7.75"

This is a small study of the tool shed by our cabin. Though done in blues it still reads like a white tool shed in what you know are green woods. Funny how the values are more important than the local color. Proof the eye thinks values are more important.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Same View, Different Color

Lake Superior Sunset, Lavender, Pastel 4.25" x 4.25"

Here is another image in the "Twilight" series. The colors in my paintings often bear no resemblance to the local colors I see. However, this and last week's post really do represent the amazing light changes one can experience on Lake Superior's north shore. In both cases the colors are accurate. The light is really gorgeous there. It is a wonderful place to be and a real treat for a painter.

The fact that it is 66 degrees Fahrenheit in Grand Marais right now while we are sweltering in record humidity and temperatures in White Bear Lake makes the lure of the cabin a strong one.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Luminous Twilight Colors

Lake Superior Sunset, Peach Pastel, 4.25"x4.25"

This small painting was done looking west along the shore of Lake Superior to what is known as the Sawtooth Mountain Range.

I started this painting with a watercolor wash to lay in some complementary colors to the pastels used to render the final image. You can see the texture of of the cold pressed Arches watercolor paper. The texture worked out well to help me show both the small waves on the water and the rough rocks of the shoreline. I primarily used Rembrandt and Unison pastels and then put in some details with Carb-Othello pastel pencils.

Pastels work especially well to capture the luminous colors of the long twilight along the north shore of Lake Superior. We are located about forty miles from the Canadian border where in midsummer twilight lasts until after 10 PM on the summer solstice--noticeably longer than twilight in Minneapolis and St. Paul. Not quite the same as the "White Nights" of a Scandinavian summer, but almost.

As I sit here describing this painting, I realize the titles of this series should have been "twilight" not "sunset." Too late: the titles are posted on the gallery walls. If you want to see them in person go to Betsy Bowen's gallery in Grand Marais, Minnesota. The Summer Underground Show will be there until July 27.