|Along The Pedernales 18x14 oil on linen panel|
Back in the studio, on rainy days like today, I'll pull out my file of photos and go through it tossing the obvious junk and culling the "possibles" into a folder. When I'm done, I go through that folder to see what it was that I responded to in these photos.
Often, it's obvious, but other times it takes a bit of zooming in, re-cropping and re-designing shapes to dig out the gold nuggets. What I end up with may often be only a very small piece within the original reference photo, but after doodling thumbnails and a bit of imagineering, my pulse quickens and I get that wonderful feeling…" I'm gonna paint this!" I call these finds "magnificent incidents".
This particular subject was only an insignificant detail, relative to the full photo it came from. But it became a magnificent incident once I stopped to appreciate the way the light was playing on the rhythmic forms, and the way they came together. As a matter of fact the "mother photo-reference" still has a couple more magnificent incidents in it. The painting I did that day, while out there, was just another study. I'll probably never show it to anyone. But it provided everything I needed to remember the way it all felt that morning.