Schumann’s Pond Storm Approaching

“Schumann’s Pond Storm Approaching” 12″x16″ oil on canvas. Plein air.

Well, we painted this pond yesterday afternoon (see that day) and we were back again this morning. The weather forecast predicted afternoon thunderstorms but we thought we would take a chance and paint in the morning. We only felt a few drops and they weren’t til the end of our painting session. It was exciting to see how different this pond looked this morning with an approaching storm and a darker sky. Of course it was still beautiful, I can’t imagine any circumstances when this pond wouldn’t be beautiful.

Because this pond was surrounded by so much untamed vegetation, I was led to simplify things in my painting. Part of that is probably the fact that I like things orderly. That sounds silly, but it’s the best I can explain it. I want things simple and orderly. I’m not saying I am successful at doing this in my life, I’m just saying I like things to be that way. Much easier to do this on a canvas than say, in a kitchen! But I digress . . .

I found painting this scene, just like I did the day before, in a more pared down fashion suited me. I spent more time focusing on the color and value relationships and less time on the details. And really, when I am outside painting plein air, the most valuable information out there are the color and value relationships. Drawing can be done from a photograph but color and value are so distorted by photographs (and printers and monitors) that it’s best for me to focus on the things I can’t get inside: true color and value relationships.

So I spent another couple of hours painting this pond and listening to the symphony of noises from water fowl and the occasional distant cow while I studied color and value. We also fought off a lot of ants, and wind, and eventually the rain came. Another wonderful day of plein air painting!

Painting in progress at this beautiful pond.


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