Friday, March 31, 2017

Landscape Painting -- "On the Jones Creek Trail"

"On the Jones Creek Trail"
 My newest acrylic landscape painting, "On the Jones Creek Trail", on 16" x 20" gallery-wrapped canvas, was inspired by lovely walks in the Jacksonville Arboretum and Gardens with my husband and little Shih Tzu dog. The memories and photos used as reference material (one of them shown below) span several visits, and this painting is a composite of scenes along one of the trails, which weaves in and out of a woodsy area, with many views of Jones Creek. Here in coastal North Florida, natural vegetation can grow so thick that I need to "clear out some underbrush" to create a pleasing, balanced composition for painting. However, what is included in the painting is truly growing near the creek in this amazing park within Jacksonville, Florida. 

     Our city is blessed with a wealth of parks, preserves, and nature trails. The arboretum was rescued from unused land owned by the city (which had acquired it after a mining company had strip-mined it for materials used to make titanium). Although illegal dumping and the residue of mining had compromised the area, some citizens could envision its future as an arboretum and natural recreational site. You can read more about the delightful park it has become and see photos here. My husband, a master gardener and member of the North Florida Native Plant Society, worked on clearing and planting projects with many other volunteers. My previous posts about visiting the arboretum also show its uniquely North Florida beauty.
One of the reference photos used in painting
     I used a mostly cool palette for this painting because it represents a transitional season toward the end of winter, when vegetation here is more subdued in hue than in spring and summer. The acrylic paints used include cobalt, cerulean, Payne's grey, lemon yellow, yellow ochre, burnt umber, and titanium white with a few touches of naphthol red to temper and vary the greens.

     I hope you enjoy taking a walk in the arboretum with me.

Question of the day: What kinds of natural environments have been restored and preserved in your area?


  1. You know I enjoy your travel stories. This painting is just super along with the why story. Excellent color choices. Applause.

  2. I meant to say that they have put in a huge amount of work on Bastrop and Buescher State Parks in our area. They were almost destroyed in the huge fires in 2011. They have replanted and continue to work on the substructures. There was so much erosion after, partly because that was the driest and hottest year in Texas and then the rains came with no ground cover. It is slowly coming back. Pleased about that!

  3. Jo, super cool to hear from you twice! Thank you for mentioning the color choices; I tried out some blends before working on the painting and am pleased with the results of the palette.

    Sorry to hear about your seriously dry/then wet weather and the destructive results. It's good to hear that your state parks are coming back. The power of nature to regrow and renew is amazing.

  4. I love state parks very much. I love to go camping at state parks alot. I like to go tubeing at the state parks were the spring is very cold i don't the name of it.

  5. When are you going to have a another openhouse and show all of your painting. I love all of your painting very much. I hope you will have a another openhouse very soon sometime

  6. Mary, I like the way you used your photos and came up with a scene that represented the transitional season. I like the bare trees in the background and your color choices.

  7. Hi Anon, It's fun to hear about your visits to state parks and how much you enjoy them. Thank you for visiting my blog.

    Mary, I love your comments for the specifics your mention! You are always encouraging and always mention details in your comments about art works. That is truly helpful; I appreciate it.

  8. I love all of your art work. I hope you will have another openhouse and show all of your art work again very soon sometime.Because all of your art work is very nice lovey. I hope you and your husband have a very nice easter next weekend. Do you and your husband have any big trips coming up this summer.