BELOW IS MY TASTEFUL PAINTING ON MY NEW PAINTING RIG AND A CLOSEUP OF MY ZORN COLOR PALETTE. What a day!
Marianna M. Duford
...an artist with wanderlust
Early this morning my husband and I headed out for the land trust where we own a piece of heaven for fishing...and painting. This photo was taken later in the morning, AFTER a wind and rain storm. That's why I'm so stylishly dressed in a rain poncho layered over 2 shirts, a sweater, a polar fleece vest and topped with a soaking wet wool chapeau. This was my new plein air palette's inaugural session along with my new plein air umbrella! It was a test and everything came through "swimmingly". While setting up I decided to try out a new for me, really old paint layout, referred to as "The Zorn Palette" used by Swedish painter Anders Zorn, (1860-1920). It consists of only 4 colors; Yellow Ochre, Red, Black and White. I've had a tendency, lately, to paint really bright "noisy" paintings and I thought I would try to paint something a little more tasteful and subdued...I almost made it, but ended up adding Cadmium Yellow at the end. I don't think Zorn ever painted a Colorado fall landscape...I just HAD to have a few brighter greens that were virtually impossible to make with the 4 colors. Sorry Zorn, but I read where you added it on occasion, too...I guess I'm not alone with the need for a little bright color now and then :) A little after completing my tasteful painting the Gods cut loose with a torrential rain storm and we arrived home to see Buffalo Mountain coated in snow...PLEASE go away, I'm not ready for winter yet and I'm not done with fall!
BELOW IS MY TASTEFUL PAINTING ON MY NEW PAINTING RIG AND A CLOSEUP OF MY ZORN COLOR PALETTE. What a day!
I've had 4 paintings selected for a show in the Framed Image, a gallery in Denver, Co. It's wonderful to be showing in another gallery. I've been lucky to have been represented by a wildlife gallery, Ducktrap Bay Trading Company, in Camden Maine for the past 13 years. When I paint almost everyday the inventory grows till it seems to take over my studio and I've needed another outlet!. This Framed Image holds themed shows. This one is titled "Coming Home"...paintings that mean home to the artist. The first one is "Sailing on Lake Dillon"...it was a beautiful fall day and we were out on a friends boat when I caught this lone sailer out enjoying a swift run on the water. The second one, "Fish Tag" is of my Father-in-law who loved to fish on the river by our home. If you look closely you'll see the fish looking at him while the rod is in a totally different place. The scene for third one, "Oxbow Ranch" is right down the road from our home. I love the old log entry that just screams Colorado. The last painting, "Indian Mountain Fall" is a view from where the Healing Waters for Wounded Warriors is held. It is a huge private ranch that invites the warriors and the guides, (one is my husband), to a 3 three day marathon of love, healing and fishing...and I get to tag along and paint :)
Well...I'm off today to Chicago for another show. Adios amigos e amigas.
The Framed Image
5066 E. Hamden Ave
"Coming Home" September 16-November 2
12X16 plein air oil
WOW, what a spectacular day! Four of us were lucky enough to get to plein air paint at the beautiful estate of Bob and Libby Swenson in Spring Creek Ranch. We were treated like visiting royalty, which is what dirtbag artists secretly are :) and allowed the run of the place. We were greeted with cantalope tidbits, coffee and tea and given a small tour of the property...I imagine it would take days to really see the whole place. I settled into this lovely clearing and worked myself into a frenzy trying to capture this magnificent Douglas Fir...the biggest one I've EVER seen! After raining all night the colors were fresh and alive. I hope I did it justice and want to thank our wonderful hosts for also treating us to a picnic on their tipi's deck! Wow...feed us we will come...and multiply. Che bella giornata!!! (What a beautiful day!!!)
On the old easel today!
Today I met up with our group to plein air paint just down the road from my house. The home belongs to one of our little intrepid group of outdoor nuts. Their property backs up onto a lovely little pond and we picked a view of the South Williams Fork Mountains to capture. It was early morning and not much light was hitting the peaks as of yet and it was peaceful and still...except for the doggies that live there, too :) What delightful company and what a delightful way to spend the morning. My goal was to paint a more "tonal" version than I seem to be producing lately. I've developed a taste for bright color it seems! I think I managed to accomplish my preset exercise...but just couldn't resist hitting it at the end with a few zingers! I'm taking a Pop-eye view of this by just accepting that I am what I am and I do what I do!
Today I'm spending the afternoon rounding up all the last minute details and "things" that I need to have for this weekend's outdoor art show. It seems endless, but if you forget to pack something you need it's usually too late to go back and round it up. Planning, planning... and more planning! This Saturday and Sunday,7/8th of Sept. is a gathering of artist's in the Frisco Historic Park sponsored by The Summit County Arts Council called, "MEET THE ARTIST'S"....SO STOP BY IF YOU'RE IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD AND MEET US :)
Enjoy your day...peace out!
There is a small town East of Keystone that is a throwback to earlier days when silver mining was rampant. When I first moved to Summit County they used to joke that everyone in town owned a shotgun and wasn't afraid to use it and that it was a town with no rules ...setting off dynamite in celebration of the Fourth of July is probably frowned upon in some parts of the world. Pretty much true as I remember it 30 some odd years ago. Now it is a little more laid back regarding strangers visiting, although still populated by an eccentric population. It's listed as a ghost town in many references, but I'm sure the 65 town residents, according to a 2010 US census, would have to disagree. Surrounded by 13,000 ft. peaks it sits in a beautiful valley and is filled with buildings that date back to the 1860's. There have been several fires throughout the years that have destroyed many of the historical buildings, but there are enough still intact to emote the past when is was a bustling mining community of over 1,000 residents. Our Monday plein air painting gang headed up to Montezuma early this morning. Some of the leaves are already changing! Arghhh, but it will be beautiful. The tundra of the high peaks above treeline are already glowing with golden hues! I had taken a break to walk around and take a gander at the other paintings and when I got back to my easel I had a lovely assistant that was blocking my "area". One of the local "residents" had planted his self, or herself...I didn't get close enough to look, smack in front of my easel. I'm not sure, but I think it was just another art lover/critic stopping by! Have a fabulous day...it won't ever happen again :)
Today I'm off to the the windy city of Chicago...and I hope there is a breeze so I don't cook! I'm a mountain girl and 80 is a really hot day for me. The company that has purchased reproduction rights for 30 of my paintings, West of the Wind Designs, is an international wholesaler of Outdoor All Weather Art....yes, canvas art that can be hung outside 365 days a year! Any hoo, they are revealing their new line at a show being held on Navy Pier. The company has licensed 14 new paintings from me, ( a total of 44 paintings now!), and they are flying me out to meet their customers. The company manufactures the product, markets and ships it, I get a little piece of each sale as per our licensing contract. Meeting the artist helps make the product more personal to the buyers, better for them and better for me. Fun...but grueling. It means standing on concrete for 10-12 hours a day, smiling and being cheerful to literally hundreds of people a day. This is just another cog in the wheel of selling and marketing your art. Hug your favorite artist the next time you see them at an art show on the street and take the time to admire how difficult it is to haul their life and their art out onto a street in search of making a living. Peace out till Friday and wish me luck...I've put an extra smile in my purse in case I need it :)
I signed up for an art workshop, which was held yesterday, with master painter Marc Hanson. It was a group of 14 artists of considerable talent! Many had come to our part of the world to participate in a plein air paint out fundraiser for, Wild About Colorado, which started today. Back to yesterday! The morning was spent watching Marc paint...in a continually changing pattern of rain, no rain, rain, sucker hole of sun and then more rain. The umbrellas were out in full force and there was a fun camaraderie developing as we all ducked in and out of the dry spaces provided...while watching our good natured leader finish in spite of the conditions. A true plein air painting warrior. We consumed our lunches and then had to set up to paint our own plein air wonders using the techniques of our fearless leader. A friend caught me in a photo as I painted in the constant, COLD, rain and drizzle. (It wasn't raining when I set up out there!) Most of the crew were smart enough to set up under cover of a small building next to the pond...but not moi! With too much to pack up I had to stick it out! I was getting a river of water on my paint palette and finally figured out that the rain was running off the umbrella onto my hat and every time I looked down a stream of water gushed down, and as we know, oil and water are not made for mixing. The black and white oil study I had painted for reference became a work of mixed media...oil paint, water and sand as it flew Wizard of Oz style out of my reach. Considering everything, it ended up being a great day. I learned something, had a few laughs and made a new friend. Three years ago, on August 13, I lost one of my best friends to a valiant battle against cancer. Marla, you were a sister I chose. I KNOW that you would have loved meeting my new friend...she both likes and tells stories, enjoys a good glass of wine...and tequila. A tri-vecta day if I do say so!
Small Pond 11x14 plein air oil
Monday...the day our group of plein air painters usually gathers to share the outdoor experience. I've spent years painting by myself and have found it rejuvenating to paint with other like minded individuals. Today we gathered at an area called Frisco Open Space. A beautiful and natural setting with lush grasses and waterways studded with beaver ponds, and of course, ringed with our beautiful Rocky Mountains. The morning started out beautiful and calm then worked itself into a brooding, angry, rainy and threatening sky. Which of course made it mosquito heaven. I'm mosquito chum...they LOVE me and no one else is usually bothered by them if I'm around. We quickly finished up our masterpieces and packed up all the detritus required to spend a day out in the elements paintings. I headed home to work in my studio while it rained and now it has become a gloriously beautiful day again...just in time for cocktail hour!
Appassionati d'arte buonanotte...good night art fans!