Plein Air painting at Bird Park usually means being watched while I work. Passerby often stop to chat, comment or just watch. Today was one of those days
“JB’s bench”is a 5x7 oil done Plein air painting at Bird Park this morning. I went with Lisa to grab a bit of the first sort of cool morning in a while after weeks of oppressive heat. As we were painting, a gentleman stopped by, excited to see us painting. It turns out he grew up in Walpole and that the bench I was about to paint is his father’s bench. I went over after finishing and took a photo of the plaque. It felt like serendipity that we picked that spot today. Love to make people smile.
Having spent years visiting the park when I was a child in the1950's & 60's, it is like a magnet for me when it comes to subject matter. I have painted the bridges, gates, pathways and music court. I have painted the old cement benches that were there when I was a child. The trustees have been replacing them with these more modern benches and this is my first attempt at the new benches. The landscape design with it's meandering paths, sloping hills and contrasting mowed and wild areas creates many compositional possibilities. Mature trees, ponds and wild life offer a plethora of choices. Scenes that are primarily greens I find challenging to paint. The red tree on the upper left and the reddish sidewalks helped create a nice color harmony and influenced me when choosing this spot. The water level in the pond was quite low as it had dried up from the drought. I chose to paint it as I remembered it with the water level up and duckweed floating on the surface picking up the light values in the birch branches further down the path.
I hope you like it!