I am not yet ready to write about my experience this summer, maybe I never will, but I did take many photos, and then yesterday I painted an image from one of those photos.
So the lake I paddle in, I will not name it because of the stalker, sad, anyway, there are in the outer edges what I call the tree graveyard. There are many stumps of trees sticking out of the water, and also underneath there are many logs, when you paddle through it is like an obstacle course.
I began by drawing from the photo I took, since painting while in the canoe is not really an option. I love this particular branch sticking out of the water because when I first saw it I thought it was a bird standing on the end, and as I paddle closer I thought it looked like a dragon. As I look back through my photos from this summer, I see I took a few pictures of it, on different days.
I then went to my art area and painted, forgetting everything, the phone, the internet, using the bathroom, everything, completely lost in each stroke. I had a teacher in high school, whom I overheard talking to another student about painting hair, and that moment when you get so lost in painting hair that you forget what you are painting. That was me yesterday, painting the twisted and gnarled branches.
I love Georgia O’Keeffe and I did go to a show of hers in Glens Falls this summer, and there is no doubt that I was inspired by her while I was painting. She has always inspired me. But I think in some ways I did what she couldn’t. She did not like the Adirondacks, found it too green, painted dark and blocky paintings of the grounds of the Stieglitz estate, twisted the ubiquitous birches into some nearly unrecognizable form, but there are bright lights from this time though, short star bursting breaks into the artist she would become. But I do not find the Adirondacks to be so green, if you look and love this place with all your heart, the green goes away and all the other colors come out. The green becomes like your skeleton, its there, it supports everything, but it is not all, and in the winter the green is gone.
Here is my painting.