Extreme Bloom du Jour

Summer Solstice and a Full Moon…can’t miss this.

Let’s see what’s happening on the Hill.

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“Strawberry” moonset.

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I pick a palette with orange for sunrise and tone the paper.

I want to paint before the sun, without artificial light. I am surprised by how difficult it is to see, surprise surprise no light, no see…What I learn is that, because I’ve been practicing in this spot with the same subject and I know where my colors are, I can do a lot without needing to see. Memory and habit kick in…this is fun!

But, if you are wondering what I’m looking at:

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By 6 AM sunlight strikes and the dawn light fades. Time to pack up.

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Time is running out for our bloom and fruit catch 2016. The few hours I have left to record are of course during the hottest parts of the day.

I am bombarded with the dangers of being outside but, can’t stop now.

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It is 108′, not a cloud in the sky, a little humid.

I have the palo verde.

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Actually quite nice.

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The noontime light brings out the true colors of the crown.

Yellow is cheery and red-violet super sweet and delicious.

I tone yellow because I see it but also because I need an uplift. I have to pretend these cast shadows are not obstructing the drawing, like looking through bugs on the windshield. Selective seeing such as it is.

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And that’s 1:30-3PM.

Here is a peak at the project coming along. I wanted to take it into the night but won’t have time…perhaps another separate project, too bad that moon will be gone.

It starts at 4:30 AM and changes every 90 minutes. Ends around 5:30-6PM. I’m missing 10:00 and 11:30 now, but will get those in pretty soon, before the fruits fall.

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(I will) Never forget the Saguaro Bloom!

 

Bloom du Jour # 7: First Fruit

Fruits are in full force. The crown I picked is slower because of its orientation away from the rising sun (I think). Today it is humid and cooler and so I go up at the dreaded noontime hour.

Reward! Fruit (well was fruit, all gobbled up now).

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This means PINK, long wait, at last…here is the tetrad with red-violet (pinkish), yellow-green, red (pink) and green.

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I am using sanded (400-600 grit) U-Art pastel paper for these studies. You can’t mess around with the sanded paper…see it-state it, as they say.

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Mixing the two reds and then applying alcohol for a quick drying wash/tone of the entire page. When in a hurry, 90 minutes, and with a larger format, 12×12, pre-toning the paper will let you leave areas alone that match or support the overall image.

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The draw-in takes one-half hour.

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Got my extremes in first; darkest darks and lightest lights.

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And there it is! The, Aha!

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And for the Grand Finale, a little gnat catcher swings in for a sampling of saguaro fruit deliciousness. This bird is really hanging out, long enough for me to find the camera, focus and snap a picture, well 20 pictures…so the fruit must be really worth it.

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Big risk=Big reward, that’s our mantra.

No Bloom but Fruit du Jour 4 and 5

Here are the “warm”afternoon pastels of our favorite Saguaro crown…Did you know that blooms close as the sun sets!  I never noticed this…such are the benefits of observation.

On the Hill, it is 100 degrees, thank you Palo Verde tree shade.

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Things are looking yellow-orange around 2.

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And that’s a wrap for today.

The temps are going to skyrocket so I make a plan to get out for another afternoon before the big guns.

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I’m thinking I’ll catch some blooms today, since there were obvious signs of more action.

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Awe, missed it!

This one starts later at 3:30 PM.  Not a one Saguaro with bloomage, too late in the day. Plenty of other interesting developments to observe…it never goes how I think it will, always a surprise!

Like this color choice…who would of thought, chartreuse?

But, then the red-orange creeps in…oh my, this may turn out to be my Frankenstein.

Possibly the heat is effecting coherency. Although, the afternoon breeze and thinking of Jack in the snow has a cooling effect.

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The palette: Yellow-green, red-violet, red-orange and blue-green, a tetrad (4).

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5 PM, the shadow of the Palo Verde moves over the crown which changes everything. 90 minutes is average for plein air.

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Hmmm, kinda wild.

Surprisingly, not a walker at this usual high volume walker hour, smart walkers.

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Still, a few more paintings to go. Can’t wait for those juicy red fruits!

 

 

Bloom du Jour 3

Had to leave town last week so missed out on Mejor Bloomage. But, that’s ok! because my mind has gone to fruits already anyway.

Welcome bloom du Jour third time, 8:30 AM start, earlier than the others, I see mostly violet this morning.

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I tone my sanded paper violet and choose a color harmony which supports this hue. I pick a tetrad (4) of two complementary combinations; violet and yellow, blue and orange.

Also, must consider the “orange vest” effect which may be influencing the violet/orange choice. I like!

photo credit Paul Mirocha

Holly Hobby of Tumamoc Hill photo by Paul Mirocha

First pass of outlined drawing with slight pink and orange reflection.

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I almost deviate to make a study of this other arm because it is so different and has blooms in sunlight which are attractive, but must stick to the plan.

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Stay focused!

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It’s 10:00 and the sun is moving around to pick up the crown. Everything is going to change dramatically now so it’s “Times Up”.

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The morning studies are very cool overall, so I’ll try one in the afternoon next, to see if a warm color will dominate.

Until then,

Adios.