Monday, April 25, 2016

Gardens, Galoshes and Gravy

"Fence Post Rendezvous"
I am FINISHED!!!! And I finished this piece just in time to enter it in the Elks Helldorado Art Show today.  It was close, down to the wire actually, but I made it and am very pleased with the final results.

  I can say that with each painting I do, I learn so much.  This piece contained several difficult elements in the composition.  The children for one and the horse for two. This is the 5th painting in a series of pieces that I have titled "Down Country Roads".  Painting these pieces has provided such therapy to me as I recall little moments in my childhood growing up in the Ozarks of Central Missouri.

It has been my desire, with each piece I paint, to capture your imagination, strike a sweet chord with your own childhood memories or tell an interesting visual story that grabs your attention.

My mother always had a large garden plot that she put out vegetables in each spring and then we would reap the benefits come summer as we would start the harvesting the best tasting produce you can imagine.  The memory of the taste of fresh snapped green beans and tiny new potatoes cooked up with a piece of ham in mom's old cast iron skillet still makes my mouth water today.  I've made that comfort dish numerous times for my family but it has just never been the same.  Mom would tell us kids to go out to the garden and pick green beans, radishes, cucumbers, squash or tomatoes to add to our dinner that most often consisted of a fried meat of some kind, mashed potatoes and gravy.

I can also remember that I always had a pair of rubber boots to wear to protect my shoes from the snow, slush and deep mud.  For the area to be so green there must be lots of rain.  Way more rain that we have here in Las Vegas.  Most of us can barely justify owning an umbrella let alone buying full on rain gear for our children.  We also called those rubber boots "galoshes" and I remember having red ones that matched a red raincoat and hat with little yellow daisies printed on it.  I was quite stylish as I made my way to school in the rain.

In keeping with my other pieces in the series, I added the blue morning glories and tall grass along with several hidden creatures.  See if you can find two tiny baby cotton tail rabbits, a fat toad and a nest of quail eggs.  They are there, I promise.

On a personal note this piece is really special for me because I used my own grandson as model for the toddler reach in the basket to get a second carrot for the interested palomino.

I hope you enjoyed this little labor of my love and I invite you to check out the "Down Country Roads" series on my website and leave me a comment letting me know what you think.

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