With the Covid Pandemic there has been upheaval in everyone’s lives. During this past year I took a break from my wood canvas art paintings. Just recently, I decided to explore art again. I do absolutely love working with wood and painting, and combining the two for me is rewarding. My oldest son back in 2000 hiked the Appalachian Trail. It inspired me to try a different art form. 3D art I guess you would call it. The piece you see here only has about $15 in materials, but I know could sell it for many times that. The laired panels to create the 3D look is just from a 1/8″ piece of wood panel which I bought at a big box store for about $6. I just cut it to make it look like mountains and then sanded and painted them. The frame is just repurposed from an old ugly painting it once held that I bought from a second hand store. The cutouts of the hiker, trees and moon were bought on-line for cents on the dollar. The cutouts are bare wood, so I painted them with the colors that I thought would best suit the picture. The creation is just a labor of love for my son and what he accomplished. I presented it and gave it to him last week, and he absolutely loved it. I don’t know what is more rewarding, making art or giving it away. Anyway, I just thought I would share it here, and welcome any comments.
This painting is of Penelope and Louis Hiking. It’s the 8th painting of them in a series I am doing. I used to small pine planks glued together for the canvas.
A challenge and a victory. Hiking the Knife Edge Trail to Chimney Peak on Mount Katahdin Maine. Like the game of Chess it takes strategic moves. I did this painting for my oldest son. I combined his love of Chess and hiking into one little painting. It is a reminder and tribute to him for tackling the Appalacian Trail back in the year 2000. This is small wood canvas measuring only 5″ X 7″.
During some years, for about two weeks in mid to late February, the setting sun creates a mesmerizing deep orange glow phenomenon when it strikes Horsetail Fall. This is a small waterfall that flows over the eastern edge of El Capitan in Yosemite National Park. El Capitan is a majestic enormous rock face, and a favorite of rock climbers. The fierce orange glow of the fall is caused by just the right conditions like water flows, clouds and temperature. The natural effect gives the illusion that intense bright orange lava is cascading off the cliff of El Capitan. Timing is everything when the angle of the setting sun causes the light to hit the waterfall just right.
When I lived in California for a total of nine years my family and I frequented Yosemite as much as we could. In fact, we camped there for an entire week on one occasion. I can understand why John Muir spent almost entire life there. In my opinion, its one of my top places to see on the entire planet.
I painted this on two small cedar planks. I added a snowy owl because it just felt right. I hope you enjoy the painting, and of course I always look for feedback. Good, Bad and Ugly.
I call this painting Owl Mountain. My wife loves owls, and we both love nature. I wanted to paint a painting dedicated to owls for her. I didn’t want to just paint a single owl. I wanted this painting to exploit owls in some kind of new way. At first, I couldn’t figure out how to do that. I was having painter’s block. I wanted to be outside the box on this one.
Then one day, out of nowhere it had hit me. We recently took a trip to Colorado, and the Rocky Mountains and Pikes Peak were still fresh in my mind. This is how I came up with Owl Mountain. I wanted to combine a mountain range with some owls. So, I started to formulate a plan for the scene in my head. All kinds of thoughts started to pour in. This painting is a culmination of those ideas. These are not the Rocky Mountains. They are made from my thoughts only. A fictitious place dedicated to owls.
The owls are actually part of the mountains, like the wood I paint on is part of the art. When you think of it, this isn’t to odd. Presidents are carved into Mount Rushmore, so to me (albeit weird), this wasn’t to out of the ordinary. This mountain pays tribute to owls in a grand and unusual way. Frankly, if there was such a place…I would like to visit. All said and done, I accomplished what I set out to do I think. My wife thinks so as well, and she really loves this painting. Satisfied. I can now move on to my next painting quest.
After camping here for a week with my wife in May of 2015, I decided to do a painting of Cane Creek Falls. This state park (Fall Creek Falls), is nothing short of spectacular. In fact, it’s hard to believe a it’s only a state park. In my opinion it could be a national park. It’s located in Tennessee and it’s massive with over 26,000 acres. There are six major waterfalls located within it. In the foreground of this painting is Cane Creek Cascades. Cane Creek Falls is in the distance, and its not even the largest falls there (85 feet). That title belongs to Fall Creek Falls (256 feet), and its the tallest water falls east of the Mississippi. This place is absolutely amazing. Beautiful hiking trails, a lake, lodge, vistas and abundant camp grounds. This is just one painting of it. I could do 30 paintings of this park, and not even scratch the surface depicting it’s beauty!
I enjoyed doing this painting because of the time of day approaching sunset. The orange sky splashed on the trees and water nicely. If you are looking to paint something for the first time, you just can’t go wrong painting nature. I didn’t use cedar planks this time. I used pine planks. They are basically the same as far as dimensions, but the wood is a little heavier, but its also smoother. For me cedar or pine do very well for my canvas. I won’t paint on anything else for now.
Since I started painting again this year (2016), this painting is #16. I’m going to keep running with it and see where it goes. I’m practicing for retirement. Like I said in other parts of this blog, I’m just trying to show that the wood canvas is part of the art, and I’m trying to encourage that anyone can give painting a try. I have absolutely no training is this. I’m simply winging it with my own painting style. I don’t care if it’s right or wrong. I’m just going with the flow, or in this case with and against the grain. If I can do this, anyone can. There is one problem I am having now though. I’m running out of wall space to hang the paintings. Oh well, I guess I’ll just start stock piling them somewhere or give them away to anyone who wants them. I hope you enjoy the falls. It’s a great place to escape.
This painting is quite large (4 feet long x 2 feet high). It’s a depiction of what I remember from the current river. This river I have floated what seems like a hundred times in my lifetime. There are many high bluffs along its path. There are a few caves and trails along its many miles. Birds like King Fisher, Great Blue Heron, Hawks, Owls and Buzzards are also plentiful. The clear spring water contains a variety of fish as well. There are snakes and turtles and beaver too. It’s a beautiful river, so it was easy for me to paint from memory. Spending several days with some overnight camping on its gravel bars is a wonderful experience. Did you notice I even put a fire at the bottom left of the painting? I have dedicated this painting to my dear niece Angie, who also floated this river on many occasions. The canoe in the painting has the number 47 painted on its bow. It represents the age of Angie who unexpectedly and tragically passed while I was painting this. I do get a little emotional when I look at it. I love it for the river of course, but now I always think of Angie when I see it. Love you Angie. Always and Forever….Uncle Kevin.