Friday, February 15, 2013

"Everglades Storm" Commissioned Painting Finished

Everglades Storm   36"x48"  Oil on Canvas

Commissions are great because they offer challenges I might not otherwise undertake.  This collector wanted an ominous, threatening sky filled with dark clouds and strong wind blowing the tall saw grass and sabal palms.  I usually choose to paint beautiful skies and balmy weather so developing this painting stretched me in a different direction.

The quickly drifting clouds allow sunlight to shine brightly on the grasses one minute and then into darkness the next.  The cloud shadow on the lower right corner of the painting, as well as in the distance, makes the sunlit grass even more bright by contrast.

The close up of the cluster of palms shows a white egret huddled in the shadow of the saw grass using it as a wind break.  Another egret flies off into the distance in search of a quieter place to hide. 

Years ago, while living in Ft. Pierce, Fl on the east coast I drove around Lake Okeechobee through Immokalee down to Naples to visit my parents lots of times.  As often as not I saw this very scene on many of the those trips so this painting resonated with me.

Wind blown sabal palms are fun to paint.  They are very tall and "gangly" causing them to sway in the wind.  The fronds blow in pretty much the same direction with the wispy ends whipping in all directions. 

I had such fun with the painting!  I think I captured the essence of the moment.  Let me know what you think.