Tuesday, June 12, 2012

27 Dresses Series #5: Flirty Dress

"Flirty Dress" 7" x 5", Oil on Canvas Panel • SOLD
"Flirty Dress" revealed itself to me on April 19, in Annapolis, Maryland. I didn't know I'd find her. I was on my way to paint a red and white striped number I'd seen the night before. I walked into town from Graul's Market with my backpack, easel, panels and pizza box carrier, and my Plein Air Magazine tote - given to all the participants of the 1st Annual 'Paint the Adinrondacks', you all remember who organized that, right?

The day was sunny, and very warm, and it was a stimulating walk to arrive at State Circle. Years ago, while a student in landscape painting class with Richard Nieworth, I stood in a quite spot on this circle and painted. The wind blew my palette over onto the brick sidewalk, and I was sure bells and whistles would go off, and that the Historical Society would arrive on the scene at any moment. No one knew this happened but me, and I did my best to wipe up the red, yellow, white globs of paint, which resulted in smears!

So from that time on, whenever I was in Annapolis, I'd check to see if my paint was still on those bricks. This was back in the late 1970's! I didn't find my marks this year, but that isn't a bad record for Utrecht oil paint!!!!

I walked around the circle half way, and took a narrow pedestrian street that would cut through to the harbor/market area. Nice, interesting old houses, and at the end, a small shop called "VIVO". And, "Voila!", there she was, such a cute dress with spectacular color and shape, and the wall of the shop behind was a WOOZER color! I loved the black mannequin, 'a first' since I've started to paint this series. Still, the red and white was just around the corner, and it was still calling me. I'd have a look before deciding to paint. Like magic, it had disappeared. Good for me, as that dress was on a busy street with sidewalk cafe tables and lunchers!

I backtracked to this side street and
observed this dress from another angle.
You can just see the Annapolis State House dome in the distance to the left of this quirky, but very paintable, house; and in the right foreground,
the VIVO shop and Flirty Dress to the right.

I liked this view, too. I sat down all my equipment and dug out my sketchbook to make a couple compositional sketches, so important! (the drawings are in the previous post). I then reached for my tripod, which I'd left in the car!

Nothing to do now, but figure it out.
I sat on a 5" curb, and straddled a gutter with running water.
Notice that one handle of my trash bag is clipped to my pants leg!
This was rough, but there was no choice.
I wasn't going anywhere without that painting of Flirty Dress.

Behind me was  . . .
In front of me (besides a messy garbage bin) was . . .
my backpack with a small 6x8" magnetic easel propped on top. The good news was I had shade the entire time, very few visitors, and a subject before me that made it all worth while.

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