Saturday, July 05, 2008

"Red Van in Shade" -- plein air field study -- oil on panel 9x12" -- Margie Guyot

My friend Cal invited me to join him painting on the grounds of Behr Art Gallery, on Route 31, just south of Charlevoix. It's the 4th of July weekend and the gallery owner wanted some potters and painters on-site, doing their thing. As soon as I walked onto the property, I saw this bright red van sitting in the shade. Aha! I loved the look of the bits of sunlight on the hood and the reflected lights on the side. In the distance is a slice of Lake Michigan. Give me something big, colorful and reflective and that's what I'll choose every time, as opposed to a grand vista.

The good thing was that I could stand in the shade and paint. The bad thing was that I stood in the shade and painted. It was home to hundreds of ravenous mosquitoes! I'd look down on my arm and see 5 or 6 of those buggers at a time, sucking away. I was more than halfway through the painting before I noticed them and I didn't want to just quit and walk away. Thought I'd go mad. Even slapping turpentine on my arms didn't faze them. Finally Cal came by and said he had some bug spray in his SUV. Thank goodness. I was on the verge of screaming and running hither & yon. Need to write on my next shopping list: bug spray.....

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