Friday, January 10, 2020

January 10, 2020 - A New Year, Two Views

All images are photographed late in the evening for posting the same night we paint them.  We strive to reproduce the color of the paintings here as close to our originals as we can, but some variation is probable.  The paintings are labeled with our initials preceding the date label and title.  The date label is Month/Day/Order Painted. 

All of these paintings can be purchased on our website.  This link will take you to the page where they're posted... Salt Marsh Studios.

Marc's Day
We are almost 1/3 of the way through our month!  Yesterday morning we were up before first light, managed to blast into the morning's work and were done with our 3 paintings for the day, by about 11:00am.  It was exhilarating, challenging, and satisfying to work with that kind of immediacy.  Following the morning session yesterday, the pace of our day picked up with some things we had to do... Dottie had a private lesson, I had to run for supplies, get some grocery restocking done for us and Dottie's mom, get a dog to Dottie to go to the vet, get our young dog, Tybee, some ball chase time, make some dinner, wash some clothes and do some dishes... and then get all of the photographing and writing done for the blog, website, Facebook and Instagram.  So... today we kicked it back a notch or two and moved at a much slower, relaxed pace.  The weather helped because it was mostly overcast, but humid and warm, completely comfortable.  While painting the first one this morning on a fishing pier on Thunderbolt, a Chatham County policeman walked out to do some glassing for redfish and spotted sea trout.  That meant a conversation about fishing, of course, which lead into a conversation about the history of the area and old ghost tales!  He was a great guy to talk to, plus I got some really good fishing tips.  After all of the dramatic imagery from yesterday, today's paintings seem almost sleepy.  That's okay.  A little rest is always a good thing. 

MH - 1/10/1 - Feeder Creek
This was painted from a fishing pier on Thunderbolt, kind of a high perspective, looking down onto the marsh at a still high tide, but ebbing.  By the time we were done, the oyster beds and pluff mud was showing.  It was hard to find a decent composition, and in fact it was a little awkward to be honest.  I don't know what the grasses on that little peninsula were growing on, possibly just a mud bank, or a rock jetty, I'm not sure.  But it was vital the the way the flow of the feeder creek's water entered the main channel of the Wilmington River.  Lot's of hooded mergansers, egrets and even some migratory loons from the north were there feeding on bait fish.  We kept hearing the lonesome bellowing of loons while painting, which made me think I was back up in the Minnesota lake country.  

MH - 1/10/2
The second stop was back across the Bull River on McQueens Island.  Ate a bite of lunch in the truck, then wandered across Hwy 80 to paint looking to the SW at a very quiet sky.  There was a beautiful gray quality that we relaxed and paint until it began to rain.  We rushed to pack up and get back across the highway only to find that there were a couple of guys with a broken down pick up truck parked near us.  They asked if I could use the truck to jump them, we did but that didn't quite do it.  I'm afraid they might of had fuel injector issues, fuel wasn't being delivered to the spark.  They had someone who they could call to help get them back to Savannah, so we made our way to the last painting location... THE BEACH!!!  

MH - 1/10/3 - A Calmness
Yes, it's always better to be at the beach!  It's such a calming place to be no matter what you're doing, I wouldn't mind being there fishing (February look out!), or just sitting.  Anytime that I do that sort of thing, I wish I was painting.  When we started the skies were subtle but the water was beautiful, a worked up sea, beautiful greenish gray water with warm wave troughs, all settled down into little rolling patterns by the time they hit the shore.  I decided that I didn't want to paint more than just that simple idea, so I did, until the wind and rain once again, drove us back to the shelter of the truck.  I think that we'll spend more time at the beach as this adventure continues.  There is so much to paint, so much peace to be had, dunes to challenge compositional ideas, and just the smell and sound of the sea to sooth the soul.  See ya'll tomorrow! 

Dottie's Day

Today felt like we had all the time in the world to paint....compared to yesterday :)  I'm not going to lie, I was a little worried getting back out there after yesterday.  You always hope that the bad days are just that, a day, not the beginning of a slump.  With that in the back of my mind I set up my easel.

DTL - 1/10/1 - Marsh Cut
This little cut in the marsh captured my imagination. The sun was out and the light on the grass was beautiful.  The tide was starting to go out so there was some nice movement in the water.  Painting decision made! I blocked in the big shapes. And then, guess what? Clouds moved in. No more sun, no more great light, no more great color.  Totally different painting.  So I painted from what I had in front of me.  The clouds got really good and I was wishing that I had a lower horizon to focus on them. But those are the perils of painting on a day that the weather is unstable. However, sometimes unstable weather can be a good thing...

DTL - 1/10/2 - Rain Shower 
I do love the sky.  After lunch the clouds were moving in and the sky was captivating.  We crossed the highway and painted facing the sun.  The clouds were so soft in color but the pattern of light shining through the breaks in the clouds was great. As I painted and the clouds moved, I could see the rain coming down over the marsh.  I love that!  The only problem was moving toward us.  So that's when you have to paint a little faster than the raincloud moves :)  It was a fun finish.

DTL - 1/10/3 - Sparkle and Shine
When the clouds are good, there is no better place to paint than the beach.  The tide was coming in and the waves were gorgeous and I was so tempted to paint them. BUT...  to the west the sun was shining through a layer of clouds and lighting up the water in front of Little Tybee and the island itself was shrouded in a beautiful hazy mist.  The light on the ocean, the sparkle and the shine... that was the story I wanted to tell.  

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