Sunday, February 20, 2011

Plein Air Again!

I finally packed my pochade and paints and headed out today. Keith and Helen, fellow OPAS members had planned a paint out in the Markham Village, a lovely area of Markham with historic buildings and a true old style village atmosphere.
For the last couple of years, my themes have been mostly rural farms and landscapes. This was clearly going to be an urban outing and it was either going to be a challenge or a disaster. I made peace with the idea that I may very well come home with a scraper (a panel that is painted and then scraped clean because it was too hideous to keep).
We met at Helen and Keith’s home and business at Wilson Street and fanned out in the area around the village. After looking around for a while, I finally settled down in a parking lot at the intersection of George and Church Street. Helen and Tom joined me in the parking lot as well each painting a different view. What caught my eye was the light and shadows playing off of a small garage and shed just across the street. I went to work quickly to capture the light and spent the rest of the time fine tuning the values and sharpening the composition. My focal point of course was the morning light hitting the structures, but I also wanted to place the shifting planes around the light in focus. The result was this little gem.  I am really pleased with the light and the warm feeling that vibrates through the painting. I could work on it some more, but I feel it deserves to remain as is, a first impression, full of life and with no deliberation.
Now I need your help. I am stomped for a name for this painting. So here is the deal: consider this a call for a competition for the best name for this painting. If you come up with the winning name (post it as a comment on the blog or on Facebook) I will send you a 3”x3” oil on panel mini gem as a thank you! So what are you waiting for? Put on your creative thinking cap and lets go!
Markham Village WIP800s
(La Maison Sous Les Arbres) Oil on primed panel 8”x10” $300

PS: If you go to google to look at the street view, you will find that the view that I painted is hidden behind a truck!! You will need to move back a bit from that corner to see a bit of the view unfortunately.

After many wonderful and welcome suggestions, I chose "La Maison Sous Les Arbres" as the name for this piece. Thanks to everyone who gave suggestions :)


  1. Hi Zan, how about "Winter's Last Days" as a title? I am glad the sun is getting a little stronger each day. I'm not a cold-weather painter, but rather wait for those warmer days. Nice capture of the warm light.

  2. Hi Zan, I am thinking of a title such as "Winter's Last Days". Nice warm colour bringing on the hope of spring soon.

  3. This has such a beautiful sense of light. How about "Afternoon Glow"


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