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#30×30 Day 14 : Best of Both, Worlds Apart

June 14, 2021

As much as I enjoyed making those previous winter scenes – I was also a little – I don’t know, bored (?) with the results after a few days. Looking back – sure, they were made in watercolor, but they were not FULLY utilizing the effects of water.

This one here, is an experiment. Not a real piece – just a test. A study of what would happen if I pushed the values and the wetness. I couldn’t get to a place of complete satisfaction with this test. I tried a couple renditions that got scrapped. In the end, this version is tweaked digitally – I had to push the values down to where I wanted them.

I expect for many people, this isn’t something they’d put on the wall. It’s kind of dark right?? Probably too abstract.

But – I was looking at this old photo. It’s a place called Top of the World, very near Laguna Beach. It’s kind of a favorite spot in that area. I’ve painted it about five times before in various different ways. I wanted to try another version that was both 100% watercolor – and – as different as possible than all my previous takes on the scene.

The last time I painted this scene it was an oil. I took the early morning shot and made it into a kind of pre-dawn fantasy.

As much as the watercolor is pushed into darkness, this oil is shifted into a imaginary light. I don’t know what kind of lighting that is in the painting – maybe it’s how a nocturnal animal sees the pre-dawn. Just an invention of a place – only loosely based on what you see. But the basis of the invention is brushwork – dabs, scrapes, broken color.

It’s hard to believe these pieces came from the same starting point! Or even from the same artist!

4 Comments leave one →
  1. roxannesteed permalink
    June 14, 2021 11:36 AM

    I love it – and yeah, I DO see the connection…’s in the movement! It’s not static or still but FULL OF LIFE!

  2. Cindy Shaw permalink
    June 14, 2021 11:45 AM

    Hi Marc, I have followed you now for the past twelve years and the work you produce is amazing. I have always enjoyed your images in whatever medium you present. I always see the essence of the landscapes in your renderings. I still think one of my favourite pieces is the explorers ship caught in the ice. Amazing! Thank you for sharing.

  3. Dian Burhoe permalink
    June 14, 2021 12:09 PM

    I love this series using watercolors. The paintings are wonderful and your commentary so very interesting. I think this should morph into a book on watercolor!

  4. Mabel Dean permalink
    June 14, 2021 2:20 PM

    Thank-you so much for sharing your thoughts about your work on Day 14. I found it extremely interesting and helpful to view and study your visual explorations. It’s something I want to revisit in the future when I’m overwhelmed buy awe and beauty and want to capture it on paper. You’ve shown me some ways you do it. And I find them to be thrilling. Again, thanks. Fondly, Mabel Dean, Tucson AZ

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