Thursday, July 22, 2010

Dirt Streets

"Looking Up Ferry Street"
5x7 pastel sketch - SOLD

It's unusual to find a dirt road within a New England town center these days. Most towns think it's cheaper to pave a street than to grade it each year after mud season. But for a painter, there's more value in a dirt one. A dirt one may have wildflowers and grass sprouting up around it, and its edges melt pleasingly into the landscape. You see these roads depicted all the time in hundred-year-old landscapes, but not so much anymore. Instead you see hard-edged streets that take more work to integrate into the landscape.

Yesterday, while the workshop was out painting boats at the Lubec waterfront, I turned my easel 180 degrees and discovered this unexpected scene. It was a moment of visual delight.

4 comments:

mike rooney studios said...

michael- i love this piece. it glows! nice job.
do you leave for sedona when it starts getting cold where youre at now? ive got where i'm doing the same thing (to key west in the winter).
keep up the nice work

Michael Chesley Johnson said...

Thanks, Mike! We leave for Sedona usually in November, when it starts turning cool, but this year we're heading out in mid-October so I can do the Sedona Plein Air Festival. Enjoy Key West! I've not been there, but would love to some day.

David said...

I'm attracted to the highlights in the road, which are complements to the rooftop highlights.

Very well done.

Michael Chesley Johnson said...

Thanks, David!

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