Hopefully dropping this painting off with my photographer tomorrow and have a shop update a few days later. If it seems like I haven't been sharing much new work from my trip, it's because I've been working on this one huge painting for about a month. (Spoiler alert: out of nowhere, in the middle of "the loneliest road" I saw wild mustangs on my way back east!) I'm really happy with it.
First I played around with the image in my sketchbook, then worked it into a few small pieces, but each time it felt like it wasn't getting the love it deserved -- if anything deserves a big wide open space to sprawl across, it's wild mustangs and a prairie storm, no? -- so I hauled out a big 60" long canvas and just put every piece of western newspaper and prairie photo and layered texture upon texture and drip down drip and it became one of my favorite paintings of all time. I can't wait to share Wild Heart with you in greater detail.
Some vintage photos, a smudge stick of white sage and a piece of raw rose quartz, all from a small thrift/junk store in (I believe) Ely, Nevada.
The last step in this painting is sketching some desert prickle poppies on paper and then transferring them over onto the canvas. I was frustrated to find out that some "vintage" botanical illustrations I bought to collage with weren't actually that vintage at all, and thus I couldn't use them, but of course it ended up being more fun to draw my own anyway.
Some baby's breath in my favorite old ball jar from a weekend selling art in Gloucester...
The sad truth that sometimes a painting works out and sometimes you just have to start over.
Layering and more layering. I chatted up an antique dealer in San Francisco near (but not in) The Mission and got some interesting vintage Californian papers and letters to work with.
And bits and pieces of other sketchbook and artwork exploration late into the night.