"When dawn spreads its paintbrush on the plain, spilling purple... ," Sons of the Pioneers theme for TV show "Wagon Train." Dawn on the mythic Santa Fe Trail, New Mexico, looking toward Raton from Cimarron. -- Clarkphoto. A curmudgeon artist's musings melding metaphors and journalism, for readers in more than 150 countries.

Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Turquoise Power

"Turquoise Hope," 12 x 12 acrylic on canvas

It's no secret that I love New Mexico, including the infinity of shades of color you see in the Southwest, especially the multi-hued adobes and turquoise.

In a summer when my creative will seems to have evaporated in doldrums, I've struggled to paint, and whatever I tried I considered failures, though they're really lessons.

Again asked to participate in the OVAC 12 x 12 fundraiser this fall, I struggled both from those moods, and having to switch to acrylics, in which I have little practice and knowledge. In fact, as I started two paintings, I quickly got discouraged with my results, and quit.

That's when I tried again, breathing in the spirit of New Mexico, thinking of earthen adobe and the power of turquoise. That stone of the Southwest has traditional powers of healing and balance. In addition I read that it promotes  hope, self-realization and assists creative problem solving.

Finally today, after at least two weeks of planning, experimenting, learning and correcting, I've finished this 12 x 12 acrylic on canvas, to donate to OVAC. I think this is the first significant thing I've painted in at least a month or so.

Three dimensional result
Surely some of that is because I know the subjects, but turquoise must have helped me overcome acrylics and inspire me. I'm also indebted to my friend Zina Hogan, for the painting pays homage to on of her unique watercolor paintings featured on her business card.

While I'm ready to go back to watercolor, you can see some of the inspiration that came, as along the way the painting took on a three-dimensional work, thanks to the structure of the canvas.

You can see this and many more in person at the OVAC fundraiser Sept. 24. Here's the link: OVAC 12 x 12 Fundraiser.

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