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Friday, January 17, 2014

Finding New Inspiration for a Familiar Subject

'Pawley's Island After the Rain'         19.5 x  27.5          pastel             ©Karen Margulis

I love painting the same subject over and over. Take marshes for example.  I never tire of painting the marshes. I often paint my favorite subjects in a series. Painting the same subject allows me to get intimate with it. I come to understand it. I can then focus on other aspects of the painting process....trying new things with color or composition. I already know how to paint my subject....now how can I paint it better or differently?

I am taking a break from my winter series today to work on another series idea I have....painting my favorite wide open spaces. I began with a reference photo from Pawley's Island South Carolina. I have painted the marsh here many times. I needed some new inspiration. I didn't have to go any further than my own bookcase.  A book caught my eye.

One of my favorite books on the  landscapes of William Langson Lathrop
 The book is called 'Intimate Landscapes, the Poetic Landscapes of William Langson Lathrop'.  I was introduced to Lathrop by Stan Sperlak at a workshop I attended a few years ago. I was drawn to the the work of Lathrop especially his skies. I bought the book and read it right away but it has been on my shelf ever since.  It called out to me today and I will be rereading it again with fresh eyes.

For today's painting I decided to choose a color palette similar to one of Lathrop's paintings.  This was a great way to paint something familiar in a different way.  I painted in my usual way but with a different color palette.  It was a lot of fun!   Sometimes inspiration for painting ideas is right under your nose on your bookshelf!

Here is a wonderful quote from Lathrop from a handwritten note in a sketchbook 1897
 "To move or to be moved, is to live....The finest art, like all else finest in life, is founded on Love. The prescence or absennce and the amount an quality of love embodied in any work of art is the sure guide to its value and permanence."

If you are interested in seeing William Langson Lathrop's work and read more about him here is a link to Artncylclopedia  http://www.artcyclopedia.com/artists/lathrop_william_langson.html

1 comment:

Sheila said...