Lone Tree Park, Rodeo, CA, oil on panel, 9x12"

Lone Tree Park, Rodeo, CA, oil on panel, 9x12"

Lone Tree Park, a funky little waterfront spot in the funky little town of Rodeo, CA alongside the railroad tracks. Sunday I joined Benicia Plein Air Painters there for an afternoon of plein air painting. I was determined to simplify, find big shapes, get them down on my panel with bold color, and stop. It was so much fun, made even more so by painting alongside Leslie Wilson, an inspiring watercolor painter.

 

Today I finished the painting at home from memory (above).  I had to work from memory because the photo didn’t even come close to capturing the colors from the setting sun.

Below is the painting on site, just before I filled the white spaces I’d left between shapes to avoid smearing as I worked.

Lone Tree Park, Rodeo, in progress

Lone Tree Park, Rodeo, in progress

And here’s my easel set up at the park. Since we were painting in the afternoon the sun began to set and glow with wonderful hot colors the last half hour of painting.

Painting in Rodeo

Painting in Rodeo

It was good practice to finish the painting (at least I think it’s finished) but it also felt good to do what I set out to do on-site, simplifying down to big shapes and colors.

It also felt great to be out painting from real life instead of from a photo as I’ve been doing for the book. I got permission to share some of the steps in progress which I’ll do soon.

 

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Category:
Bay Area Parks, Landscape, Oil Painting, Outdoors/Landscape, Places, Plein Air
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Join the conversation! 11 Comments

  1. Great paintings. I liked most of all about: “Lone Tree Park, Rodeo, in progress”. It is really nice!!!

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  2. This is really powerful in its simplicity. I’m always getting caught up in details……

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  3. Nice one, and I’m glad you were feeling well enough to go out and paint! If you still feel a bit low, this might make you chuckle:
    http://painteddaisies.blogspot.com/2009/11/cactus-monday-cactus-boot.html

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  4. I really like this one. Your subtitle has become my mantra: ‘Simplify: big shapes, color. Period’

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  5. Love the colors!

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  6. I am fairly accomplished at drawing with pencil and charcoal, but I was taught to draw everything and every details you see it. Give me five hours and I could draw you a creek you swear you could swim in but i was never taught to sketch. I am VERY new to watercolors (less than three weeks) I have been reading all of your past blogs entries and it has helped immensely. In my sketches, which I will admit are not very good, I try to get every detail possible. By the time I get the first part a person drawn (i.e. nose, eye, whatever) they are gone. Looking at the painting above and its lack of detail is amazing to me! I want to say thank you for spending so much time in your blog to help us newcomers to this sometimes baffling medium.

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  7. Beautiful painting! I always have trouble reaching that happy medium between detail and simplification. Your painting hits just the right spot though.

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  8. I like the goal you set for yourself: “simplify, find big shapes, get them down on my panel with bold color, and stop.” We could all use that advice. And your painting is lovely, by the way!

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  9. Bold and dramatic Jana! The simplification really works.

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  10. The colors are great! I love the combination of the purple and yellowish-green. Reminds me of Wolf Kahn.

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