Mountainscapes

I moved several years ago to an island overlooking Puget Sound and the Olympic Peninsula in Washington State.  The sight of these magnificent mountains grabbed me by the nose and turned me in yet another direction.  Weather, time of day and seasons in the mountains combine to make a movie that never ends.

Left Behind (oil)

The limited palette of this painting comes from a spare range of color on gray days and the bluish effects of distance.  In the Olympics and Cascades you frequently see clear cuts on the hills with a handful of trees left behind.  A hint of thin light creeps up from below.

Winter, East Side (oil)

It’s a delight to see the mountains covered in snow.  Occasionally the snow line drops down to sea level as here where the muscular shapes of the foothills are pronounced by the low winter sun.  The sienna color comes from the refraction of light through the edges of the cloudbank shading the foreground.

Slopes (oil)

This was a study in atmospherics using a limited palette.  It’s a very designed composition and stylized, with a hint of warmth from the cloud underpainting.

Access Road (oil)

A sun break can change the entire demeanor of the mountains.  I found this to be the same in Hawaii and here facing the Olympics.  In this painting the forest is so dense you can’t see the actual access road, only the swath it cuts through the treetops.

Mountain To Sound (oil)

The most challenging part of this painting was the mountain slope at top:  green trees, made paler and bluer by distance, bathed in an orange light.  Scenes such as this are not uncommon around the Sound, where much of the landscape is cast in cloud shadow.