Returning to Base
Oil on canvas, 36"x40"
Here's my newest painting. It's part of my ongoing "Meditation on War" series. I wanted to address an experience that almost anybody who has been in a conflict zone has had: fighting a war in a place that can be spectacularly beautiful. Now, most westerners who have been to southern Afghanistan wouldn't call it "spectacularly beautiful", but occasionally it is. My little base in Maiwand district had a mountain just to the north. Normally it was gray and dusty, like everything else, but sometimes when the late afternoon sunlight caught it just right, it glowed. That's what I was trying to achieve here.
Since signing this painting, I've been busy getting six works ready for an exhibition in northern Indiana. I mentioned it in one of my previous posts. It's the Citizen - Soldier - Citizen exhibit at the Lubeznik Center for the Arts in Michigan City, Indiana. The exhibit is of artworks by veterans. I'm familiar with several of the other invited artists and they are all top-notch. I'm really honored to be included in their company. My works will include two of the pastels from "Faces of Afghanistan", two oils from the "Portraits from Iraq" series, and two landscapes from the "Meditation on War" series. The exhibition will be open from Nov 2 to Feb 9, which is quite a long run. The Lubeznik Center is in downtown Michigan City, about an hour east of Chicago, on the shores of Lake Michigan.
I've also continued to work on my studies of color. Yesterday, I found a really good article on artists colors in a technical newsletter. Golden Paints, which produces really top-quality acrylic paints, puts out the Just Paint newsletter periodically, and they always have lots of good information for painters of all types. This particular issue (#26) has a lengthy article on different types of pigments, and how and why they differ from each other. After experimenting with using Robert Liberace's approach to color (primarily with color choices I had not used before), the article was really useful. Learning is like building a brick wall: everything new builds on what you learned before. Things I read in the "Just Paint" article made sense because I'd been experimenting with related items just a few days earlier. I love it when things like that come together!