Beautiful Holy Ground Field
My 16x20 painting in progress. I will finish this in the studio.
Notes From My Residency Journal
I hurried off to Fair Oaks this morning anticipating a short day there. The forecast called for sunshine in the morning and rain by afternoon. I arrived to a glorious morning by 9 AM and headed out to the fields and my world of joy. I spent two hours on the above painting, so it will just need a few tweaks and adjustments in the studio to finish it properly. I decided to pack up my painting gear at 11 AM and spend the rest of my time wandering the fields and taking a few reference photos.
Exploring Fair Oaks is really my favorite pastime there. The subtle changes that occur are fascinating. Week to week, season to season, and year to year, I am captivated by this land. It is ever new and challenging for me as a painter. Fair Oaks isn't so much a place as it is a breath of life for all who find themselves there. It is owned by no one, instead relying on the stewards who live there for a time. Fair Oaks owns all of us who spend any time there. It sucks us in like a sponge and it reveals its magic gradually, in subtle layers. It is both delicate and refined and crude. The textures of Fair Oaks are deep, like the roots of the mighty trees who grow there. The culture and flavor of Fair Oaks is unique.
Fair Oaks allows me time to think and to process my work. It has become my muse as a painter. I was raised to value the natural world and so my time at Fair Oaks is precious to me. Understanding the rhythm and life of the land is so important for a landscape painter. To fully understand my subject I must spend time immersed in the places I paint. It is no accident that I sell more paintings of Fair Oaks than any other subject. Our work reflects what we most love as artists.
Many thanks to my sponsors for the residencies around my beloved Florida and especially for the opportunity at Fair Oaks.