Water pounds its way down the falls: cascading, rushing, charging into the riverbed — flowing over rocks, swiftly moving forward. Untamed, the surge finds its way over, under, around the boulder-strewn river. Tumbling waters drive up mists above the falls, the rhythmic sounds create a soothing harmony below. Autumn’s low light casts long lines through the Aspen trees and glowing verge.
I decided it would be a fun challenge to create an extremely large painting, and I wanted the final piece to be very uplifting, colorful and full of energy. Opting for warm colors and working with extremely thick paint and palette knives, I chose this lily pond reference from our visit to Monet’s Gardens in Giverny, France. The grounds were breathtaking and I could actually see his paintings come to life. I was drawn to the energetic flow and yet calming serenity in this view, and I positioned the water lilies and my paint strokes in a curving pattern to add to that mood. The morning light peeking through the distant foliage added to a sense of mystery and promise that I wanted to capture in paint, and share with you that feeling of hope.
Or, stop by the Cottonwood Art Festival this weekend if you are in the Dallas area to see more of my textured oil paintings.
I love the first signs of fall – the crisp feel in the air, the crunching of leaves underfoot, the beautiful autumn colors, and being totally immersed in nature in the middle of a forest without a care in the world. In Fire and Gold I wanted to recreate that joyful feeling, choosing warm reds and yellows of autumn and using energetic strokes with my paint to heighten that mood. Building up first thin transparent layers and then thick textured layers of oil paint also add to a certain glow and magic in the final piece.
|Purple Irises – 24″ x 18″
White Rock Lake Dallas
Soft cool colors of purple
Irises are just one of the many flowers found at White Rock Lake in Dallas. This group with the diagonal line made the piece. The petals falling right into place as if they were instructed.
|Dining al Fresco, Venice – 12″X18″ Pastel ©2014 Niki Gulley|