Thursday, August 25, 2016

where this road goes

Where This Road Goes
watercolor
10 x 14 inches
©Ann Thompson Nemcosky

I have been making larger paintings recently and really enjoying the freedom that a bigger composition provides. I find bigger brushes filled with watery pigment very satisfying somehow. This one is a quarter sheet size watercolor paper which makes for a longer format than what I typically would paint. And that creates challenges in the way I handle composition. A vertical format such as this allows for more distance, which is what I was hoping for with this scene. Far away mountains and a meadow at your feet. And those blue flowers? I don't know, except that they seemed the right sort of whimsy to add to the scene.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

only what matters

Behind Pompano
watercolor
6 x 8 inches
©Ann Thompson Nemcosky

This painting is inspired by a view of a small canal that runs behind Pompano Street on Edisto Beach, SC. It is a scene that I have attempted to paint several times yet was never satisfied with the result. I was trying to say too much with too many details. The heavy stillness of that lowcountry air with the quiet water that rises with the tide eluded all of my previous attempts. Now finally, by simplifying the elements in the scene, I have a painting that captures what I was after and by now it is a scene that I know very well!

Coneflowers
watercolor
6 x 8 inches
©Ann Thompson Nemcosky

By contrast, this painting was one that came about rather quickly and effortlessly. Although I have painted the coneflowers from our garden in the past, I usually fussed about with them looking for a different, more literal result. Here I went straight in with paint with no preliminary sketching. I have found I am usually more successful getting what I am after painting flowers this way as I am better able to express the freshness that is flowers.

With both paintings it was the stripping down the subject to just the essentials that provided me with the best success. Yes, there is a lesson to be learned here.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

breezy

By The Sea
watercolor
8 x 10 inches
©Ann Thompson Nemcosky

This painting is intended as a study for a larger work. The image comes from the Golden Asters that grow right up near the beach. The painting was an experiemnt in creating a method for communicating the tangled mess that is these flowers all the while keeping that breezy beach feeling.

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Red Geranium on Blue Chair

Red Geranium on Blue Chair
watercolor
11 x 14 inches
©Ann Thompson Nemcosky

A blue chair sits on our little side porch and is our prop for seasonal decorations. In summer it's a potted flower, this year a bright red geranium. I love when the morning light of summer streams onto the little porch making patterns of shadow dance across the side of the house there. When I was thinking about making a painting from this image I imagined all sorts of ways to approach it. I thought about including marks of drawing, perhaps abstracting that scroll of the plant stand in the corner, adding pattern possibly with stenciled shapes, and on and on. In the end I just painted, and enjoyed finding the washy shadows and light filled leaves with my paint brush.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Summer Sky

Earth Sky III
watercolor
11 x 14 inches
©Ann Thompson Nemcosky

I loved the simplicity of this composition, with the meandering path moving up and over the hillside, and the way it seemed to continue the movement of the clouds in a summer's sky.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Earth Sky

Earth Sky I
watercolor
8 x 10 inches
©Ann Thompson Nemcosky

Since finishing my Water Sky series I had in mind to do a series focusing on the earth and sky. These two paintings are the beginning of that exploration. I am looking for a similar interaction of the elements of earth and sky that I found so prevalent with water and sky. 

Earth Sky II
watercolor
8 x 10 inches
©Ann Thompson Nemcosky

I have always enjoyed watching the sky and the many varied cloud formations, whether subtle or dramatic. What is the relationship of earth and sky in terms of color, light and texture and how does one affect the other in a painting composition? Naturally, the sky is the light source in a landscape. But what else? With these paintings I chose to make the movement and shapes of the clouds a part of the composition that echoes the shapes of the earth. 

Monday, July 11, 2016

Water Sky series :: the finish

Water Sky IV
watercolor
8 x 10 inches
©Ann Thompson Nemcosky

The decision of whether to post these all together or in separate posts was resolved by creating one large post in order to wrap up this series of paintings. I may have my need to paint the ocean out of my system - for a while. With this series I explored the the relationship
of the elements water and sky in terms of color, light, and texture. Of course, watercolor seems the perfect vehicle to explore this very watery subject. And when you remove the subject itself, what remains are the graphic elements, minimalist bands of color and texture. 

Water Sky V
watercolor 
11 x 14 inches
©Ann Thompson Nemcosky

Sometimes the sea is so painfully blue and it will extend onto the wet sand creating a symmetry of sky and earth from the horizon outward. 

Water Sky VI
watercolor
11 x 14 inches
©Ann Thompson Nemcosky

And then there is the variety of color. Ever changing color with the movement of the clouds, sun and water, all working together, each a part of the other and part of the whole. 

Water Sky Series 2016 ©Ann Thompson Nemcosky

My aim with this series may have been too expansive. Something as simple as water and sky has so many variables that it is difficult to narrow the focus. Because of this I approached each composition as minimally as possible, a simple horizontal line dividing the space, and then what happens where those two elements meet, on either side of that line. So yeah, it is likely that I will return to this theme at some point, because there are still mysteries to be solved.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Water Sky III

Water Sky III
watercolor
8 x 10 inches
©Ann Thompson Nemcosky

This is the third painting in my Water Sky series where I explore the interaction of the color, light and surface of water and sky. I am interested in where these elements meet, and how the appearance of one is related to the other, with only a thin horizon of separation. This particular scene was captured looking out over St. Helena Sound on a bright and very windy day. The clouds and the water were both in constant motion and it was this movement, along with the depth of blues, that I wanted to express with paint.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Blue Ridge June

Blue Ridge June
watercolor
6 x 8 inches
©Ann Thompson Nemcosky

As much as I love the coastal Carolinas, there is really no place I'd rather spend the month of June than right here at home in these Southern mountains. There is a soft gentleness to the days where the thermometer rarely rises above 80F and the nights are cool enough to snuggle under a warm blanket. We live without air conditioning in our little house and love the sounds of summer coming in the windows. Bird song throughout the day and katydids along with bull frogs sing throughout the night time hours. And when we venture out to the Blue Ridge Parkway it is views like this that remind us just how beautiful our home here really is.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Along HWY 174

Along Highway 174
watercolor
6 x 8 inches
©Ann Thompson Nemcosky

There are beautiful views along every turn of this scenic highway that leads to Edisto Island, SC. With this painting I was inspired by the softness and color of the marsh punctuated by the shadowy trees and the sky-clear water at high tide.

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