In all the craziness of the holidays, I realized I hadn’t yet posted the painting of the month story for December. I actually tried to back through my work and find something with a more wintery theme to it. But once I saw this one, I knew painting of the month was going to be this….
Maybe it’s because I’m west coast cold (meaning I can’t wear shorts and flip flops outside) and I’m longing for those long sunny days.
A common theme through a large portion of my work is sunsets or the northern lights. One I see all the time and never tire of. The other is on my bucket list. Anyways, I just can’t seem to get sunsets out of my head. Particularly those really great west coast sun setting on the Pacific sunsets. The best by far are in Santa Cruz. The colors you get with the deep, dark blue ocean. The blinding light of that golden sun bathing you in warmth. The sounds of those giant waves crashing, seals barking, and the faint music you will always hear no matter where you are in town. The screams from the Boardwalk and the wood clacking on the Giant Dipper. It is all just gorgeous. I never tire of it.
So “California” came after a trip actually to the dog beach in SC. And if you look closely you can see the silhouette of a dog in there. Management was avoiding the waves and water at all costs, sprinting away every time one crept up the beach. He had sand all over his face and the biggest grin. It was hard to see him. Even wearing sunglasses the sun just seemed so huge and bright as it sank in the ocean and all the glare came bouncing back.
I used a metallic orange for the background. A light yellow to get as close to the blinding white as I could. Then I went to the vitrail blues. I know I talk about this kind of paint a lot but I just love how much I can do with it. In this case, the way it hardens like candy but still maintains a fluidity to it. I wanted it to look like the chaos of the ocean waves crashing, meeting the look of when a wave gets sucked back out from the beach. That little bit of foam and bubbles on the perfect sand until the next wave comes in…
“California” is available in the Etsy shop.