Monday, October 11, 2010

10.12.10 ~ morning rising across the sangres

morning rising on the sangres (tooth ridge)
10 panorama xi
— 10 x 30 inches — oil on canvas
— copyright Dawn Chandler 2010

The view here is of a fond stretch of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains in Northern New Mexico — most notably a section of Philmont range, starting with Urraca Mesa on the far left followed by the north side of Tooth Ridge jutting in at an angle.

My friend Douglas took the panoramic photograph that this photo is based on. I've been cursing him ever since he sent me the photo. What a struggle trying to get the color of those mountains and the highlights upon them right! [Perpetual thought to self while painting: "What the heck color IS that anyway?!?"] I can assure you that whatever colors you think they are, you're wrong, because I tried them and they didn't look right! Ack!

And then the sky posed a further challenge: a perfectly clean and crisp gradient of white to blue, without a fleck of anything save a short line of rose clouds near the peaks. I painted it just like it appears in the photo, with a smooth clean surface, but found it.....boring. So I went it with some denser paint and a loose hand, adding some texture to the sky, as well as a larger cloud presence. The result? A much more satisfying and lively surface, and an ultimately more convincing atmospheric feel to the sky.


Douglas said...

Whatever colors they turned out to be I'd say you nailed it.

I'm very glad you turned your creative attentions to that dreadfully spartan sky; the result is stunning.

My Mom always said if you couldn't find a price tag it was either free or not for sale. Which Is it?

Joanna said...


Dawn Chandler said...

Thanks, Douglas — not only for the praise, but for the challenge of the photograph you provided!

And thanks, Joanna! Glad you like it!

Rebecca said...

Hi Dawn,

Love your art. I will be in Cimarron in a couple of weeks for a workshop with Amy Flowers (she sent me your blog link). Is your work on exhibit close by? Your name sounds familiar, I worked at Philmont summers of 86 & 87, were you there by chance?

Dawn Chandler said...

Thanks for visiting my web site Rebecca!

Alas, work is not on display anywhere near Cimarron. In fact, the pnly place to view my work in person is at my home studio here in Santa Fe. Otherwise, the best place is here on my blog and on my website (which I'm about to update with more recent work):

I looks like we overlapped at Philmont in 1987, when I was a 2nd-year TR.

Let me know if you ever make it down to Santa Fe and want to schedule a studio visit.


~ Dawn

Rebecca said...

Wish I was there longer, will be driving past Sante Fe to and from the airport-probably not enough time to stop in, but I'll try! Yeah, I was in Logistics in '87 so our paths probably crossed at some point. Cool.

I'll check out the new work on your website!