Monday, January 5, 2009

Painting with grays, Cape Foulweather

Morning Mist
9 x 9 soft pastels on Art Spectrum Colourfix
by Miki Willa
When we were staying on the Oregon Coast last week, we had all sorts of weather conditions to inspire us. The first morning, it was very foggy. I stepped out onto the deck, and this is what I saw. It was so eerie, yet beautiful. My husband did a painting of the coastline in the fog in Acadia National Park in Maine, but I had not tried working with so many grays before. It was an interesting challenge.
Pastel artists can create grays by blending, or they can purchase pastels in gray tones. I have a wonderful Great American Art Work set of three values each of grayed red, purple, green, blue, and gray. I used them quite a bit for this painting. I also used some Unisons and Terry Ludwigs to blend some of the other grays. I think I got the feel of the unifying fog that permeated this
vista.
In planning the composition for this piece, I realized that I could have a more powerful piece if I used a square format. I have not used this format before, but have seen some paintings recently that I really liked. I think I will look for other subjects that lend themselves to this square format.
When we were in Oregon, we stayed at the Inn at Otter Crest, on the south slope of Cape Foulweather. In 1778, during one of his famous voyages of discovery, James Cook came upon this cape as his first sighting of shoreline on the Pacific Coast of North America. He was within sight of land when a sudden and very turbulent storm overtook him. His trip nearly ended there, thus he named the place Foulweather. From this area, you can see miles of ocean, sea stacks, natural arches, and harbor seals in large numbers playing in the surf. This part of the Oregon Coast is quite beautiful.

1 comment:

Tom said...

I like this painting because you have captured the fog. Composition is great which enhance your sublte use of values with a overall sense of harmony.Great depth,rugged natural beauty