Tag Archives: Oil on Panel) Michaela Harlow

Winter Garden: A Painting’s Progress

winter garden - copyright 2013 michaela harlowWinter Garden ⓒ 2013 Michaela Harlow – Oil on Panel, 24″ x 24″

Winter is a beautiful season, to be certain. Snow, sleet and freezing rain add texture and sparkle to the skeletal landscape and garden surrounding my studio. I love the play of pale light as it bounces off ice and streams through the tawny blades of bleached grass and bare, twisted twigs. And yet for all of its wonder, winter is also a very difficult season here.

Living in New England during the winter months of January, February and March involves an extraordinary amount of work; particularly if you live atop a windy, 2,000′ ridge in the middle of a forest. Since Nemo, aka the blizzard of ’13, hit —bringing with it 18″ of new snow— my days have been consumed by shoveling, plowing, and moving snow banks with the tractor. These are necessary chores, of course, but terribly disrupting to my work; throwing off my rhythm and interrupting my painting’s progress and blog-posting schedule.

But here I am again, at last. It feels good to get back to work on something substantial.

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Rose Light

Rose Light  ⓒ 2013 Michaela Harlow - Oil on Panel - 16 x 16 inchesRose Light ⓒ 2013 Michaela Harlow – 16″ x 16″, Oil on Floating Wood Panel

Sometimes the only color to be found in a February landscape, is the blushing sky at dusk and dawn. Perhaps it is because the weary canvas of brown and white can seem so bleak, I am particularly grateful for the rosy hues of sunrise on a winter morning.

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Thirty in Thirty. Day Four: “Summer Room”

“Summer Room” ⓒ 2011 Michaela Harlow – (16″ x 16″ – Oil on Panel)

I started this piece in August of 2009, and finished this afternoon. Although it may be hard to appreciate the texture on a computer screen, if you click the image to enlarge, and look closely, you will see that there are multiple layers to this piece. The sheer, luminous underpainting is shrouded by blurry, rubbed out areas and scraped, opaque layers. Sometimes a painting will happen all at once (alla prima) and sometimes it will take months or years until completion. Oil paint takes a long time to dry, and in order to build layers I often rework a piece over many months or years until I get what I’m after.

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