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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

A Surprise

I took one of my beloved trips to York, Maine. Besides  the required trip to Stonewall Kitchens for tastes of all their goodies and lunch, I like to go to the John Hancock Wharf. It is a beautiful spot on the York River. It has a nice pier and it also shares the location with a great gallery, the George Marshall Store Gallery  ---

This is a great little gallery that has contempory and traditional art. I'd like them to represent me some day. It was the store that sold the stuff that John Hancock's Wharf unloaded. Eventually it because a central trading spot for all kinds of merchandise. So the spot has history, and art, and lots of beauty.

It was a gorgeous day and I did not have the pink chair with me but I decided I would paint anyway, because conditions were so perfect. I set up my paints and easel on the wharf (found shade and a great view) and started laying out my composition and getting in a few base undercolors on a small piece of paper. I suddenly did a double take. There, in the upper left of what was going to be my composition, was a pink adirondack chair just like mine, with other colors. It was in the perfect spot for my composition. I literally had not seen any of the chairs when I set up. Did you put it there, Mom? I swear I hadn't seen it at all. As my sister Georgie said, Cool..what I thought of is that the chairs with "Mom" were her friends visiting.  She would so much more enjoy a beautiful day with others than alone, right?
Well, I gladly painted it in.

Circle of Friends
Mixed Transparent Watercolor and Gouache (opaque watercolor)

Monday, August 29, 2011

First painting

Between Sunlight and Shadow

Today I worked on the first painting I did and finished it. When you first do a plein air painting, there often are areas that are missed or need enhancing. It is a delicate dance to touch up without losing the original feeling. As I sat there ready to work on this piece in my studio, I felt again the sense of Mom being there.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

The Beginning of the Story

I had only one day to unpack from my mother's funeral and repack for my planned trip to Maine to paint. Along with my clothes and art supplies, I took a heavy heart to a beautiful cove in Cushing, Maine. Solitude is good for both grieving and for making art. After getting settled and getting acquainted with the area and places I wanted to paint, I started painting. I did two paintings of the cottage I was staying in, several watercolors from the dock, and one of the gorgeous lupines. It was the perfect time to catch them at their peak!

Cushing, ME      Lupines (photo)

After painting away from the cottage, I decided to paint off of the back deck. But first, I enjoyed the view for a while, sitting in the pink adirondack chair in the back yard. It matched the shutters of the house. As I rested and, I thought of how much Mom would have loved that chair. It was her color, an intense knock-your-socks-off pink. Back on the deck, I started painting and decided that the chair looked so good there, I would paint it in. I was not prepared for what happened. I took a lot of care with this painting, painting an underpainting first, to check the composition and value areas. I was taken at how the chair sat on the line between light and dark in the yard. As I carefully started to paint the pink chair into the work, all of a sudden I sensed the presence of my mother. She was there! in the chair! And she has stayed with me through this adventure in painting.

the chair in sunlight and shadow (photo)

under painting

I'll show you the final painting on the next post. The camera and photo is in the studio and there is a hurricane between us!

Welcome to my Pink Chair Paintings Blog!

Pink Chair in Sunlight and Shadow (photo)

This is a blog about painting a pink plastic adirondack chair. I'll let you in on the story as I complete the series I am doing and show you paintings as they are completed. The chair represents my mother, Carolyn Elizabeth Pedersen Schulte, who passed on June 5th, 2011. She was a wonderful woman, full of love for everyone around her, and she loved this bright color pink. She was proud of me as an artist and would love what I am doing. I take the chair to favorite places of hers and to places or situations I know she would have liked. It is a way for me to grieve and to celebrate her life. I talk to her as I paint and make sure that she would want to be where the chair has been placed.