Friday, June 15, 2012

Painting at Daingerfield Island

In the chase at the Washington Sailing Marina
     Today was one of those perfect, warm, dry and breezy June days.  There was a brilliant blue sky full of Mother Nature's whipped cream clouds.  I had the good fortune to spend it at Daingerfield Island (not really an island) on the Potomac where the Washington Sailing Marina is located.  This is an incredible location with so much to paint that I have decided to make it a summer project.  There are great Potomac vistas with views of Washington in the distance or of Reagan National Airport which is the next stop up the George Washington Memorial Parkway.  There is no shortage of boats to paint.  Even the dry dock area has lots of interest.  There are colorful Sunfish sails as well as the brilliant white sails of the larger vessels. If I get tired painting boats I can always paint the jetliners coming in for a landing at Reagan.  They are right over head!
     Today I was joined by three of my fellow ALPAPs ( Art League Plein Air Painters) Gail Pean, Theresa Miller, and Jack Dyer.  Everyone had a successful and pleasant day.

Gail Pean at work on a great vista!
    Proving that the early bird does not always get the worm, Gail, who arrived last set up in front of the Sunfish sailing class on the river just off the point.  The colorful sails and spectators created more interest in this view than the rest of us anticipated earlier.  Her painting is off to a great start and I look forward to seeing the finished piece.

    Besides great views there is a restaurant here and a snack bar with a deck overlooking the Potomac. Free parking and a ten minute trip.  What more can you ask for!

Theresa Miller and her painting
     Theresa, like Jack and me, chose to paint the boats moored in the marina.  Both Theresa and I find them a challenge as we haven't painted many of them before.  We both agreed that staying clear of the mind bending detail was a must.  There are so many planes, lines and reflections, not just in the water but the water reflecting on the boats.  You can get a little crazy taking it all in.  I think if I paint enough of them I will develop a short hand that will help.  Right now I get a little lost when there are so many boats in one place.  Maybe I should have chosen just one boat to paint!

Watercolorist Jack Dyer
    I think Jack is in his element painting boats.  He sure is quick!  I told him his painting reminded me of a John Marin.  I covet Jack's ancient Julien half box easel.  They don't make them like that anymore.  It has a rich dark patina and hardware that has lasted a lot longer than I anticipate mine will last.  It used to belong to an old friend who gave it to him. Great gift!

Critics come in all shapes and sizes, this little guy kept walking around me:)

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