Another post on plein air painting. Every day my husband wants to go fishing in his boat. After fawning over Emily Carr’s forest paintings for months after reading “The Forest Lover” a book about her life, I packed up my painting supplies and head out to the lake with him. Today we went to Massapoag Lake. Just beautiful and glorious! I’ve been having a lot of good luck with compositions; much more than I ever thought I would. Before I had thought, they are just trees, no variation. Boring. Emily Carr’s work changed all that. I started seeing compositions where there were none before. We drove the boat to a few different locations. I searched for a bend, a fallen tree, a “V” in the trees, there is always something. Then I did a quick outline in paint and the fun began. I’ve been teaching my students at the Franco American School in Lowell about Kandinsky’s circles and have really enjoyed them. So I began using them to represent leaves, flowers, etc. Its FUN! I love them. I like creating landscapes that are abstract but still representational. Fairfield Porter, Lawren Harris and Tommy Thompson are some more of my favorite artists that have achieved this very successfully. I like their abbreviated and graphic looking leaf groupings or pine tree boughs. Being unafraid of color, I dive in. I work with contrasting colors and colors that harmonize together. When there is balance, a good design and my eye dances across the canvas, I know I have what I was seeking. I am attempting quite a few of these small paintings (all under 12″x 12″) for the Manchester Art Festival in Manchester-by-the-sea, Massachusetts this August 4th. Hope to see you there!