Oil on canvas on board, 24 x 30 cm
‘I’ve never been able to say I’ve been influenced by a list of artists I like because I like thousands and thousands and I’ve been influenced in some way by all of them.’ (Jack Nicholson)
It was a bright, hot summer day when I set up and painted this one, and as I looked at the highest values and the colour harmonies, I thought about how other painters – particularly the ones I admire – would handle these things. Even though we paint as ourselves, inevitably, like Jack, we are influenced to some extent by a large number of artists, some of whom have produced work that has impressed us profoundly and inspired us to pick up a brush in the first place, and others whose work has simply evoked a polite nod of approval.
I guess as I started the picture I was thinking of how someone like Merritt-Chase, for example might approach it. Clearly the light was warm (ok, hot!), so the shadows will need to be appropriately cool. The colours and shapes were a flickering riot, so a simple impressionistic handling should be suitable. So that is exactly what I tried to do.
Pretty much completed en plein air in two short sessions, plus a few adjustments in my studio.