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Back to my painting roots

January 29, 2010

While I enjoy experimenting with subject matter, as with the recent street scenes, I find myself returning to the subject matter I really love… simple, peaceful landscape scenes.  I wanted to do something a bit larger than my norm, and I found an 18×22 frame stored in the closet.  (Funny how we arrive at decisions sometimes.)  So why not?  I’m finding that I really do enjoy working a bit bigger these days.  I found the photos I took nearly three years ago of a creek near my home.  It was fortunate that I took the reference photos when I did, because this entire area has been changed drastically.  In the open field you see in the painting there are now streets, a scattering of upscale homes and a lot of empty, unsold lots.   As always, there are still a few touchups and tweaks to be done, but here it is.

18×22 ~ Gouache on cold press Crescent board

8 Comments leave one →
  1. January 30, 2010 3:31 pm

    Oh that looks so peaceful. I can’t even imagine houses there now!

    • February 10, 2010 1:56 am

      Yup. Well, there are some, Carol. The market started to go south about the time the developer was ready to start building. They haven’t landscaped the part that faces the main road, so it’s just an ugly mess now.

  2. January 31, 2010 5:17 pm

    You are a true inspiration for me everyday, Ralph, not only for your astonishing pictures but for sharing too that sense of “urgency” as time passes. I have been feeling the same for some time, and I am glad you could put that in words so easily.
    I only hope I can achieve your levels of improvement some day.

    P.S.: How do you fix your first layers of gouache? Or do you just start to paint with more loaded brushes instead of watercolour-like gouace?

    • February 10, 2010 1:54 am

      Tayete, I really appreciate your comments. I don’t normally fix the gouache when I’m working. I tend to start with thin washes, then work over them with increasingly opaque brushstrokes. I make the lifting characteristic work for me rather than trying to avoid it in most cases.

  3. February 5, 2010 12:16 pm


    I’ve really enjoyed looking at your webpage and reading some of your blog. I like your paintings. The simple (meant as a compliment) compositinos, and peacefulness they bring when viewing is an inspiration.

    I always look forward to opening your posts on wetcanvas.


  4. Jackie Whiting permalink
    February 28, 2010 5:18 pm

    Really enjoyed the picture of the creek. Reminds me of Jones Creek in the Fulshear area. Really love it.

    • February 28, 2010 10:15 pm

      Hi Jackie,
      Thanks! We’ll actually be in Fulshear, TX at the Cross Creek Ranch Art Festival on April10th.

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