Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Bog Tamarack - Abstraction

"Bog Tamarack"
5x7, oil SOLD

As a continuation in my search for intimate, abstract patterns, I took a hike into the Eagle Hill Bog today. The bog, part of the Roosevelt-Campobello International Park, has a nice boardwalk through it. If you do the loop, you'll see all sorts of wonderful bog flora - pitcher plants, sundew, cottongrass, leatherleaf, rhodora, dwarf spruces and dwarf tamaracks. This bog, which was most likely a kettle pond after the glaciers receded, is about 8,000 years old.

I've always wondered how I'd paint it. As you walk through, you see mostly a flat area with little trees scattered here and there. A 9x12 wouldn't capture the feeling, but perhaps a panorama would. But today I found this beautiful dwarf tamarack. The tamarack is also known as the larch or, here on the island, as the "hackmatack." I believe it is the only conifer that loses all its leaves in the fall, which gives this one those lovely, twisting branches. I knew a close-up would be perfect.

By the way, I did this one with alkyds and a different palette from my usual. I used: Hansa Yellow Medium, Transparent Red Earth, Quinacridone Red, Ultramarine Blue, Phthalo Green plus a little black. I'll be using the alkyds for the rest of my time here - so if you decide to pick up one of these little pieces, they should be dry enough to ship in a day or so!

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