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Grateful Notices: Diffused Forest, oil on canvas, 40 x 50 inches

Updated: Dec 19, 2022

Exhibited: Madelyn Jordon Fine Art, Scarsdale, NY

Private collection

My sincere thanks to the purchaser of this painting.

Behind the veil of these blue and yellow trees is a earlier forest painting in yellows and greens. I worked on that previous oil for a number of months and I never could get it to come together. I did enjoy the effort, trying different strategies to uncover that remarkable result, but it never came.

I was getting down to two radical strategies… abandon the oil and completely paint over it with a new scene or as Wolf Kahn had taught, “Do violence to the picture.” Giving the latter a shot, I began recreating the forest in dark blues and purples.

My focus was to recreate this forest as an elegant sweep of color and complexity. So to that goal, I chose to simplify the composition with blues and purples as the dominant color of the forest, used in soft hues and as dark contrasts.

As those cool colors went in, I saw the yellows and greens of the previous painting showing through in the forest background, creating a subtle effect of light and complexity. Allowing the light from the earlier work to show through was a bit magical.

To amplify the enchantment, a glowing field and sky went in. Is it done? Almost. There was a way to add a glow to the forest as well, so the dancing blue and aqua brushstrokes made it happen, adding to the allure.

With that last touch, a soft, hazy light moves across the forest from right to left in a singular, graceful sweep. That's when a calm emerged in the studio…

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