Sunday, July 26, 2009

Downs Memorial Park by the Bay

One of my favorite local parks to visit is Downs Memorial Park, which lies on the western shore of the Chesapeake Bay. This park has over 200 acres of forests and trails, as well as a large shore along the Bay with grassy areas and benches available so one can spend an afternoon looking out across the Bay, watching ships pass by in the distance.

Autumn is one of the best times to visit this park since it is full of trees that change interesting colors: chestnut oaks turn bronze, sweetgums change from orange to wine or rust red, and hickories turn golden hues. A good number of trees grow right down by the water on small raised embankments. From these areas, one can stand in the shade and look out across the water, as seen in this painting looking southward from the water's edge under a group of trees. In the distance, you can make out the far shore of the Bay across the waters.

"Downs Park in Fall by the Bay"

Acrylic painting, 14" x 17"

Monday, July 20, 2009

Summer in the Park

Here's a new painting based upon a reference photo for the monthly Landscape Challenge on the Wetcanvas forums. The photo reminded me a lot of a local farm park that has a lot of open, prairie regions with some woods mixed in along its edges. If you walk the paved perimeter trail, you'll see lots of cleared meadows between the trees - in some places, if you take a photo at the right angle, you can get an effect like that of the Great Plains.

This painting was an experiment in dappled light filtering through the edge of the woods. The mix of shadows and scattered highlights, particularly along the grass and road, add an almost Impressionist quality to the painting. I added the flowers on the right and in the grass beyond (the white tufts are Queen Ann's Lace) since it summer, and what is summer without wildflowers?

Acrylic Painting 14" x 17"