M. Stephen Doherty

M. Stephen Doherty
The editor of Plein Air magazine at work

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Painting Landscapes: Village Scene

My friend Steve Griffin took me to some of his favorite painting spots in Easton, Oxford, and St. Michael, Maryland last week. Several of the sites were along the Maryland shore with views of sail boats in the water, but I was more comfortable painting a street leading down to the water in Oxford. Of course I had to include an "Oxford Fence" in front of the white house on the left-hand side of the 11" x 14" panel. The fence is made of rails that have a clover-shaped top with a small hole in the middle of the clover. Non-profit groups ask local artists to paint rails that can be sold to raise funds.

I may exhibit this painting in Plein Air Easton because as the awards judge I am entitled to display two paintings. Obviously my paintings won't be eligible for awards. That will make it easier for me to accept rejection in the face of all the extraordinary paintings on display.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Landscape Painting: Waterfalls #3

I  decided to focus on a more intimate waterfall scene along Perkins Drive in Bear Mountain State Park, one that offered an opportunity to explore compositional scheme of a central axis juxtaposed with strong diagonal shapes. Because I worked on a  10" x 8" panel, I could apply more layers of oil color, muting the tones and adding textural effects that enriched the surface of the painting. I used a stiff alkyd white paint towards the end of the process to add clean, light value shapes where the water was flowing around and over the rocks.