Posts Tagged ‘Pierce Lake’


Time for Reflection

August 27, 2014
Time for Reflection: Oil on Canvas 36" x 36"

Time for Reflection: Oil on Canvas 36″ x 36″

I utilized a small plein air sketch created last summer to work this larger painting. I made a few changes to the design. I also worked to keep the colors and transitions to create a calm.


Reflections at Pierce

October 18, 2013
Reflections at Pierce; Plein Air - Oil on Canvas Panel 8" x 10"

Reflections at Pierce; Plein Air – Oil on Canvas Panel 8″ x 10″

Just back from the Shorewood Plein Air event.  Took a day to set up a display of my plein air paintings for an upcoming open house event then back out to paint before the weather changes.

Colors just starting to change. Ended up at Rock Cut and the east end of Pierce Lake. I used this spot for a painting a few weeks earlier but decided to alter the format and cropping to change the design. I will be using this as a guide for a larger studio work.


Reflections at Pierce Lake

September 21, 2013
Reflections at Pierce Lake: Oil on Canvas Panel 8" x 10"

Reflections at Pierce Lake: Oil on Canvas Panel 8″ x 10″.

The weather forecast was not predicted to be good for plein air painting. Since it was to be cloudy, I had not made contact with Midway nor with Indian Hills. I planned to paint in the studio.

It was very cloudy, but I felt the itch to get out and paint. I decided to go over to Rock Cut. Although I packed the painting gear, I planned to move around the park to gather sketches and generate ideas for future visits. After spending about twenty minutes sketching in this area, I decided to break out the gear and paint. No expectations, just paint. Even though the clouds were thick and there were no strong shadows, I liked the play of this scene  in the softened  light.

About an hour into the painting things changed. The sun started to break through the clouds. My soft design was now uncovering some interesting shadows. I had to restrain and stick to the design already established on my canvas.  Sun was shining onto my palette and canvas. I had to move my set up to allow me a little less glare. I was backed up into some trees when a woman came into the area. She cast her line into the water before realizing that I was there.  I didn’t so much mind her fishing, but the constant casting and reeling took away the clean crisp reflections. A few minutes later, her boyfriend arrived and they took off down a path to fish in a more isolated spot.


Plein Air May 23

June 7, 2012

Plein Air – May 23 Pierce Lake Gathering; Oil on Canvas Panel 11″ x 14″

I had been to Pierce Lake a few days earlier and created the 11″ x 14″ painting posted above. As I returned home, I was dissatisfied with the reflections in the water and the debris. I took time to wipe out and modify the water. I returned this day and made a few adjustments of the colors in the reflections and then took time to place the debris to finish this design.

I still had time available and liked the view to the west. The clouds that were moving through made the design. I took a few minutes to draw my design on the canvas panel. I instead of doing the smart thing and taking care of the sky, I spent time working on the distant trees and  the water. By the time I was ready to work on the sky, the clouds were gone. It was a beautiful clear blue sky, which was not desirable to me. I looked to the south and saw some wisps of clouds and used that as my inspiration. Always problem solving and taking on challenges, even if they are somehow self-inflicted.

Plein Air May 23 Passing Clouds; Oil on Canvas Panel 8″ x 10″


Red Oak Grove at Rock Cut – Plein Air May 16

May 31, 2012

Red Oak Grove Plein Air May 16; Oil on Canvas Panel 9″ x 12″

Found this location at the bottom of a hill and alongside Pierce Lake in Rock Cut. I set up my gear and was busy painting before I realized that I had stationed myself within about thirty yards of two families of geese. They did not seem to mind my presence. A couple of times, one male took off to chase imposing geese away from his brood. I felt privileged when at one point, a hiker ventured near and the goose raised its wings and hissed to ensure that the hiker kept his distance. I was actually closer to the geese than the hiker. Perhaps geese appreciate artists.


Plein Air – April Along Pierce

May 10, 2012

April Along Pierce, Oil on Canvas Panel 9″ x 12″

The days are getting nicer. A beautiful, but cool Saturday morning. I grabbed my gear and headed to Rock Cut. I had a couple sites in mind. Unfortunately neither site grabbed my interest. I hiked along one trail which lead down to the lake. Nope. Made my way to one of the fishing docks. Nothing. Returning to my car, I noticed a gap between a couple bushes. The path lead down to a nice spot along the  lake. Not much room for painting. Nice spot which offers several design possibilities. Busier than I expected. More hikers than I anticipated.

Funny overhearing the various comments and conversations from the hikers as they neared my spot. I was a bit hidden and people did not expect me. A few people were obviously embarrassed by what I heard them say. Interesting morning.


Plein Air October 6

October 20, 2011

Plein Air October 6 #1, Oil on Canvas Panel 6" x 8"

Plein Air - October 6 #2, Oil on Canvas Panel 6" x 8"

Back out to Rock Cut for painting. I headed to a spot on the west side of Pierce Lake. This area has picnic amenities and is the convergence of several hiking and biking trails. It is a busy area. Fortunately for me, the passers by are busy with their own activities and leave me to paint.

As I was setting up to paint, I heard a voice. It seemed familiar. A man in sunglasses riding a trail bike rolled up to me and smiled. Once he took off his sunglasses, I was able to recognize the man as a friend of ours. This sight was out of context. We spoke for a few minutes and he rolled on and let me get back to painting.

Although I had to move my set up occasionally in order to avoid the sun shining directly on my painting, I must not have moved enough. As I was nearing the completion of my first painting, I realized that I had a couple wooly bugs crawling up my pants leg. They must have thought that I was very similar to the nearby oak tree.

Painting #2 was a little more of a challenge. As I was laying in my design and trying to capture the shadow patterns, a man rolled up and parked his large pick up truck in the middle of my design. You see, the area which I depicted as grasses, is actually park of a parking lot. I stopped for a few moments to evaluate the situation. Do I continue with the painting? Do I stop and wipe out the drawing and pick a different subject? Do I ask this fellow to please move his truck? The fellow got out of his truck and grabbed a small shovel and large bucket from the bed of his truck. He was stopping to gather acorns. I figured that this couldn’t take too long. Could it?  I continued with my painting. He took a little longer to gather his finds than I had anticipated. I had to make more adjustments to my shadows than I needed to, but in the end, it worked out.


Plein Air October 5

October 18, 2011

Plein Air - October 5 #1, Oil on Canvas Panel 6" x 8"

Plein Air - October 5 #2, Oil on Canvas Panel 6" x 8"

Clawed and I headed to Rock Cut State Park to capture some colors. Found a nice spot along Pierce Lake near the concession stand.

It was a fairly busy spot as a lot of trail runners and hikers passed by frequently. Mostly they just gave us a quick glance and continued on their way. That was fine with us. That much activity lends a certain feeling of safety.

About halfway through the first painting a women came over hoping to see the work in process. Not much of a dog lover though. Clawed approached her, looking for some attention and affection. She did not know that. She kept a distance and allowed us to keep working.