The Wilson Downtown Gallery in Harrisonburg, Virginia is currently hosting an exhibit of my paintings. This gallery participates in First Fridays and will have an Artist’s Reception on March 6 from 5 – 8 pm. The show will stay up until the end of March. Located within Harrisonburg Homes just south of the square, the gallery (and realtors who make it possible) welcome viewers during regular business hours as well. See the website or Facebook event for more information on the location.
Two new additions to the Colors of the Blue Ridge series are on the walls there, along with fourteen other pieces celebrating the natural landscape in the Shenandoah region. (I’ve been working on this series for over a year now. Catch up with my previous posts: Colors of the Blue Ridge and Many Moods of the Mountains.) I will have notecards available featuring many of these scenes at the reception, as well as fine art prints of select paintings.
One more first for this show: I included three plein aire oil painting studies. These were painted in 2018 and 2019. Because oil paintings need to cure for 6-12 months before being varnished, this is the first time I have displayed them.
At the February reception, I was thrilled to talk with friends, family and lots of local art lovers. I’d love to see you there on March 6!
It still takes my breath away. For more than twenty years, I have had the pleasure of living in view of the Shenandoah National Park. The peaks and ridges dominate my view to the southeast.
The Blue Ridge is the name of this chain mountains that stretch northeast to southwest through the length of Virginia. Granted, blue is the color it appears most often. But I have seen those mountains be every color of the rainbow and then some. Verdant green on rare summer days when the humidity drops. Chartreuse creeping up from the foothills in the spring. Subtle red, blazing orange and even golden in the setting sun of autumn. Shades of magenta when the summer sunrise sideswipes it from the east. Violet as the morning sun comes up from behind in the colder months. Brown and grey in the doldrums of winter, or suddenly snow-covered in dazzling white with every tree defined in wet black. And blue. Deep cobalt in the heat of summer when the air is thick – deepest in the hollows. Dark, brooding blue as the heavy thunderclouds dump untold tons of rain onto her slopes. Thin periwinkle blue fading more with each distant ridge into the sky on a cold, overcast day. Royal blue, watery blue, steel blue.
The light can flatten or sculpt the hills. Back-lighting in the early morning or scant light on a overcast day creates the illusion that the hills are cut out of paper or air-brushed onto a wall. But their volume is revealed in strong evening sunlight. Shadows offer contrast in value and color. Orange on the light side, purple on the dark. Or green on the light side, blue on the dark.
Weather patterns add another dimension. Small, puffy clouds can leave a mottled shadow pattern on the undulating surface. We might have clear skies above our valley, but on the other side of the park a storm rages with thunderheads dwarfing the tallest peaks. Fog can blanket the base or clouds might obscure the peaks. Sometimes a low blanket of clouds rolls over the whole range, creeping over the ridges and sinking into the lowest parts.
It goes on and on like this. My twenty years of observation are a drop in the bucket to the millennia that God has been creating new works of art here on a constant basis. The ever changing kaleidoscope defies any one description. Thus, a series of paintings to explore the many moods of the mountains.
The view I have is directly into Big Run Portal and just to the south, Madison Run. Rocky Mount, Rocky Mountain, Rocky Top, Brown Mountain, Austin Mountain, Furnace Mountain and Treyfoot Mountain are a few that can be seen frequently in this series. I’ve hiked in these areas, but it is still hard to identify the peaks without a topo map. And some days I am sure a new hill has sprouted up that I’ve never noticed before.
These are a few new watercolors currently hanging at the Rockfish Valley Community Center (until early September). They are all on the smallish side and priced between $90 – 125. Framed size is 14″ x 14″ for all except Sunset on Massanutten, framed at 16″ x 20″.
Sunset on Massanutten Watercolor Sold.
Sunrise over the Mountain. Watercolor Sold.
Mossy Forest III Watercolor Sold.
Spring Ascending the Mountain Watercolor Sold.
Spring in a Field Watercolor Available.
Mourning Dove Watercolor Sold.
To purchase, contact me directly or leave a check with Sara or Cathy at RVCC.