Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Old Mill Revealed

Old Mill Revealed, L. Daniel, 9 x 12

A week or so ago Plein Air Austin met up to paint at the Zedler Mill in the small town of Luling, Texas. The original mill was built in 1874 on the banks of the San Marcos River and these old buildings are part of what remains. I loved how the low light of morning cast a giant shadow across the whole scene, and then slowly receded to reveal the rugged glow of the structures. It was magical.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Early Start

Early Start, L. Daniel, 8 x 6, SOLD

If you wake up early and walk down to Westlake Beach, you will see the sun rise behind the distant shore of the lake. I don't get going that early very often, but I managed it for this painting. I loved seeing the silhouetted forms of the dock and tied up boat against the bright light of dawn. It was kind of blinding... in a good way. :)

This will be my last Westlake Beach painting for a little while. I will keep going and am excited to do a batch of fall paintings there. It's such good discipline to revisit one place over and over again. Meanwhile, I have some other work to share with you.

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Sunday, August 29, 2010

Sunlit Vine

Sunlit Vine, L. Daniel, 6 x 8, SOLD
This is another quaint little shed at Westlake Beach (so curious about what's inside and will have to ask next time I get a chance.) What really caught my eye was the way the dappled sunlight struck this bountiful vine that is reaching over the fence... it so wants to be on the inside with all the beach fun!
UPDATE: Turns out that this little building started out as Grandma Depwe's "Lake Cabin"; and this is where she cooked up many one-skillet sensations for her children and grandchildren. It later became "David's Refreshment Center" offering visitors everything from Dreamsicles and Fudge Bars to bamboo fishing poles and 25 cent inner tubes. When David went off to college, it became a storage shed, but apparently it still houses two old refridgerators that were spray painted blue back in the day! (Who knows, maybe the refreshment center will make a comeback!)
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Thursday, August 26, 2010

Pier Sparkles

Pier Sparkles, L. Daniel, 6 x 8, SOLD

An early, cloudy morning at the lakeside reveals a silhouetted pier sparkling with glints of brilliant light reflections. I have to say, it's pretty contemplative at Westlake Beach when there is no one else around. A set of wind chimes drums out a soft, continuous call just to listen and enjoy. Otherwise, all's quiet.

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Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Little Shady Greenhouse

Little Shady Greenhouse, L. Daniel, 8 x 6, SOLD
This little greenhouse shelters the potted plants at Westlake Beach during the winter months here in Texas. It was handmade by the owner, David, and is a charming addition to this wonderful, vintage beachpark. In this very hot month of August, it's hard to even remember cold enough temperatures that would require using this little shed!
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Monday, August 23, 2010

Lake Light

Lake Light, L. Daniel, 6 x 8, SOLD

Light reflecting on the lake has a special quality all its own. This particular morning was especially still and the light absolutely shimmered off the shore. This peninsula marks the opening to the cove across from Westlake Beach on Lake Austin.

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Sunday, August 22, 2010

Red Boat, Blue Boat

Red Boat, Blue Boat, L. Daniel, 8 x 6, SOLD
Many boats are moored at the Westlake Beach Marina - it's a deep cove that looks small from the lake but is surprisingly large when you get inside. David, one of the owners, grew up on this property and remembers helping his parents and grandparents repair the docks as a kid. He tells how his grandmother would cook up chili in her small cabin for them for when they came in from working. Isn't that a wonderful childhood memory? This is truly hallowed ground.
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Saturday, August 21, 2010

Morning Veil

Morning Veil, L. Daniel, 6 x 8, SOLD
One morning I was painting at Westlake Beach, and suddenly I heard the strumming of a guitar. Then I heard a fiddle; and then I heard singing. It turned out that two musicians were at the water's edge practicing for a weekend gig. Could I have been any luckier??? They sang and played the whole time I was painting - it was pure joy.
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Friday, August 20, 2010

Beach Shack

Beach Shack, L. Daniel, 8 x 6, SOLD
The thing about Westlake Beach is that it's really family friendly; and lake toys abound. They even hang from trees! And of course, after all of the frolicking, the inner tubes and beach balls are carried back to the Beach Shack to await the next round of lakeside joy. :)
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Thursday, August 19, 2010

Marina Reflections

Marina Reflections, L. Daniel, 8 x 6, SOLD
I live very near Westlake Beach, a wonderful, family-owned marina and lakeside park on Lake Austin. It's a charming piece of old Austin that has been around for 56 years - quirky and untouched by the fast pace of current life. Think about creaky docks, wooden picnic tables, beach toys and windchimes, the smell of boats and gas, and you may get the picture. This summer, the owners have granted me special access to come and paint there in the early hours before it gets too hot. What a peaceful way to start my days!! This is the first of my "Westlake Beach" paintings.
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Thursday, August 12, 2010

Sycamore at the Springs

Sycamore at the Springs, L. Daniel, 8 x 6, SOLD

I love the swimming holes in Texas! There are so many really cool places to dip in the water and sit in the shade in this area. Today, my plein air friends drove 30 miles out of town to Krause Springs - a family owned campground and, well, swimming hole. This spring fed creek runs through limestone outcroppings and is complete with a cave and rope swing. Kids of all ages were having a ball!! And so refreshing after painting in the heat! :)

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Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Cabin Entrance

Cabin Entrance, L. Daniel, 6 x 8, SOLD

On Saturday Plein Air Austin met up to paint at the Barr Mansion, a wedding venue outside of town. The mansion itself is a cool old Victorian structure, but what caught my eye was this old cabin behind it. Here is the really sad thing... this entrance used to belong to a gorgeous ballroom that burned down this spring. I have seen pictures of the ballroom but can't actually imagine how this was connected. Maybe a service room or catering kitchen of some kind? I do know that many a wedding reception took place here and it is definitely being rebuilt. For now it's a burned out shell; literally, just to left of this scene. (Oh, the power of cropping!)

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Thursday, August 5, 2010

Summer at Deep Eddy

Summer at Deep Eddy, L. Daniel, 12 x 9

This morning I met my friend Terri Wells for a "paint and swim" at Deep Eddy, a local pool here in Austin. On these warm, summer days we have to get out early and preferably have some water nearby to fling ourselves into! Deep Eddy Pool is filled with spring-fed water and stays a constant 68 degrees. It's so refreshing!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Marshland Study

Marshland Study, L. Daniel, 6 x 6, SOLD

I did this small study in preparation for the larger diptych that I posted yesterday. It gave me a chance to prethink some of the color relationships and play with the grasses. I am always trying to figure out how to make grasses look authentic without getting too fussy.

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Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Marshland Flow

Marshland Flow, L. Daniel, 24 x 48 diptych (24 x 24 each)

I love the East coast marshlands! They are such fuel for the imagination as they quietly surge with the tide. High tide, low tide, mid tide... each offers a new and distinct version of itself. My stay in Georgia offered daily trips over the East Beach causeway and this gorgeous view was there for the taking every time.