Every year, I like to paint my apple trees. Last year, they bloomed too early; this year, with the cool, wet spring, they are late. But, then, I've also seen them bloom in mid-June, so maybe this year they are actually right on time! At any rate, they have just started. My project for the next several days is to paint several large canvases of them for a show I have in August.
Campobello Island once had many family farms, and apples were planted aplenty. Our property was such a farm, and it still has perhaps a dozen different types of apples. Some are good for eating right off the tree, some need to be cooked first, and a few, I'm told, need to sit in an apple cellar for a winter, and those will become the sweetest. A couple trees in the dooryard must be a hundred years old. All of the trees could use pruning; we don't do much more than cut down the raspberry canes around them once a year so we can at least get to a few apples each fall.
It has been a cool and foggy week. When I first noticed the buds were beginning to swell, I waited one more day until they began to open a bit. Then I set up and blocked in an 18x24 canvas, just to get the foundation of value and color laid in. The second day, the trees had opened a bit more, so I set up again to refine the relationships of the big shapes. (If you aren't sure what I'm talking about here, you might check out my mini-video on Adjusting Shape Relationships. http://stores.lulu.com/miragenm) Now some of the trees have exploded into bloom - but not the trees I was painting! However, the blooming ones were close enough that I was able to use them for a model.
Below is a sequence of photos, plus the finished 18x24. I plan to do a few more large ones, and I'll have to work fast - the blooms won't last more than a week or so.
End of Day One
End of Day Two
Final: "Apple Trees and Raspberry Canes" 18x24, oil