Sierra Blessing – California Eastern Sierra Nevada Oil Painting Commission
18 x 24″ landscape oil painting on canvas
Today, I finished this Eastern Sierra Nevada painting with much love and joy, and shared a photo of it with the client who commissioned it. I have since signed it and will give it a protective coating in a few days and then it will be time to leave my studio and go to live with a new family.
The origin of the painting has an interesting story, I think. The individual contacted me because she had seen a painting of mine on my website of a location close to where she lives. But as we got to talking, it turned out that she also liked my painting of the Sierras, a place where she and her family had camped together and enjoyed many happy days together.
This painting is a reflection of one of those special places, with a view of Lone Pine and Mt. Whitney. It has a special significance to the family that makes it especially sacred to them. I feel honored that she entrusted me to interpret this spot artistically, and I hope that long after I am gone it will be passed down in their family.
For me, this is what making art is all about. It is about taking something in the real world and, through the application of study, practice and technique, turning it into a creation that will capture a feeling, a moment in time, a spiritual insight. I love painting plein air, and I do it as much as I can, but sometimes I rely on my field studies, sketches, direct observation and other references to re-create a scene. That was the process I used here.
I love this painting so much that I am going to paint it again, in a slightly different size, probably a little bigger … and no doubt I will interpret it a little differently. That always happens.
Out of the wreckage of the runaway truck accident, there are some positives. Yesterday my dear husband went to the store and recovered three paintings which the store owner had carefully found and put up on the counter in a safe place. (The vase of peonies, a pink magnolia watercolor which I had forgotten was there, and the vertical eucalyptus painting.) Today my husband visited just as a cleanup crew was arriving and showed them a poster we made with small images of the remaining six works. They promised to keep an eye out for them. If they find even one or two more I will be very happy. And I am optimistic that they will!
As a dear friend of mine is fond of saying “You can’t see around life’s corners.” Indeed we can’t. Which is why it is especially important to do our best and be kind to each other at every opportunity.
And now, it’s time for me to get back to the easel!