Saturday, February 28, 2009

Blue Velvet Bay
















I'd come across this horse in a pen at the side of the highway and I was so taken with the amazing color of the horse and the brilliant red tin of the building, that I had to get some photos. Even then, I was picturing this horse with his glorious color and the red building in the background as a future painting. I posted one of the photos on my sidebar labeled (ha ha) Blue Roan? - making all the horsey people wince - and I wrote this about the photographs I'd taken.

I've been letting this painting percolate until this past week. On my Wednesday "demo day" I did two mock-ups (pictured left) neither of which pleased me compositionally. I felt the hues of the foreground were about right, but I wanted a more abstracted painterly look, not a classic landscape. In the mock-up, the red building was taking over - and for me this painting was all about the horse. I came up with the final layout while drawing on the panel in chalk, as I did not want to be doing a paint-over this close to show time.

I thought I'd finished - and even took photographs. And looking at the photos on my computer realized the eye, muzzle and head were too detailed and fussy, so I went back and changed them to the version seen here. It's another large one: 30 x 34, on deep cradle panel.

This is the last painting for the March show at the Heritage Center Gallery. The show will open Monday, March 1 and run through the 31st. Here's the original look at the horse and red shed.

22 comments:

Roy said...

Huh! Shades of Franz Marc! True, your style is very different than Der Blaue Reiter school painters, but your color sense is very much like theirs. I have a special affection for the Blue rider school, especially Franz Marc and August Macke.

Stylistically, this is something of a departure from your other paintings. I like it, though.

kathi said...

This "last" painting before the show is really nice. I could sit and look at it for hours...
Good luck with your show! Wish I could visit!

Patrice said...

Hi Roy - Yeah - I see this as being somewhere between my bird series - and the moody, yet more realistic very recent work.

This one feels good to me and I've already got a couple more brewing that are looking and feeling like this.

Ima Wizer said...

This is really stunning!
One of the things I would not let students paint was/is horses because the anatomy is so difficult! You are spot on! It is perfect.......and those colors!

By the way, Alice Neel is one of my all time favorite painters! Love her quote on this blog!

Shayla said...

Very intriguing composition. The purple tones in the horse are fabulous.

Patrice said...

Thanks Ima and Kathi -

Alice Neel is fabulous, isn't she?

As for painting horses - It's ironic; since I was a little girl, I wanted to have and draw horses. Sure, I've done sketches and small bits, but never attempted to seriously paint the images I wanted. Why? Knowing the fabulous work of Susan Rothenberg, and great equine artists such as Rosa Bonheur and Delacroix tends to be intimidating. Only recently have I thrown off worrying whether my horses would be good enough, strong enough, or unique enough to show.

I only have to please myself; if others approve, that's gravy.

Paintings by Irit Bourla said...

This is a great piece.I really like it.Perfect horse and colors.
And, good luck with the show.

willow said...

These are fabulous, Patrice! I love how you've captured the velvety coat with red shadowing on his belly. Paired with the red barn it's simple, elegant, wonderful.

Dean H. said...

A very nice painting. I especially like the reflected red light on the underside.

RT said...

Hi Patrice, the final version seems more iconic and less narrative than the earlier versions. Even with a more formal composition it`s still breezy and light, very nice.

June said...

I love this painting.

azirca said...

Beautiful painting, the colours are so striking.
All of your paintings and art work are wonderful, such talent.
Thanks for your comment on my blog too.

poeticgrin said...

Patrice, this is beautiful. There are some paintings I just want to leap into, and this is one of them. It brings a calmness to me, an ease which I needed this morning. Thank you for sharing. I can feel my hand running over his side. I can feel myself petting him and hear myself talking to him. I used to go on long bike rides and halfway through them I would stop and visit with a horse. I would give him an apple. My stops were very theraputic. Your work breathes and lives and brings me back to that place of peace.

patchworkfibers said...

You've captured the spirit of the horse! It's great - I love it!! I'll come by the Heritage Center to see it in person soon.

Patrice said...

I want to thank everyone for the wonderful comments and generous words.

I am grateful that everyone took time to look and offer support.

Helena said...

This is beautiful. The light is fascinating. It's so hard to capture light. You're so talented! (And I could never get horses in scale- always the head too small or the body too short etc etc...!!! They are a hard creature to do!)

Helena said...

...oh, and I do love Dinah's toes!!! And look at Madeline! I want to go worra worra worra on her tummy!!!


(Cat lovers should know what i mean by that. Er... or is it just me?)

Premium T. said...

This painting is stunning! The colors, the composition -- I get really happy looking at it.

m. heart said...

this is gorgeous!
and i love the photo you started with too.

Dave King said...

The final photograph is a real winner, I think. The colour and the textural contrasts both show it off to perfection.

Melinda said...

I've only recently been visiting your blog, but I think you have a strong talent and you've got some wonderful art mentors, i. e., Alice Neal, Susan Rothenberg, Georgia O'Keeffe, etc.

This painting shows how well you're understanding composition and color. Looking forward to seeing your future work!

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