Thursday, May 31, 2007

Peinture Claire

This is my newest work to come off the easel this week. Having arrived back in New England where I grew up (we have been away for 18 months) I was anxious to head out to one of my favorite places... Sakonnet Point. As a kid we used to hang out on the point and snorkel for lobsters and crab. It is a really beautiful place with clear waters and abundant with bird species and sea life. I have had it in mind for quite some time as a place I wanted to revisit and paint. We hit it on a perfect clear, sunny day at low tide. The transitions in color in the water are incredible here and I knew the effect created on the shoreline where the water is as clear as glass would be a challenge to capture on canvas.

I came recently upon a term in reading a book on Impressionism... Peinture Claire. The definition given is this: Painting expressing light by means of a predominantly pale luminous tonality.

This concept intrigued me and I thought Sakonnet Point would allow me the chance to explore this technique a bit. I decided to try bringing the darkest tones up a few notches to infuse the entire piece with more light and hopefully a more luminous quality. This term continues to fascinate me and I am curious if anyone else out there has also experimented with anything in this realm? It seems something you could really push into with interesting results.