Cotopaxi Storm

cotopaxi storm 1

This painting came about in the midst of a struggle.

I was fighting with an entire painting series that wasn't going well, and decided to take a quick break. There was a photograph that had been on my mind, and I wanted to see what I could do with it.

cotopaxi storm 4

This image comes from my trip to Ecuador, where we explored Cotopaxi National Park. While we hiked around a lakebed, the wind picked up, some dark clouds rolled in, and a storm threatened.

Fun fact about me: my absolute favorite weather is the quiet moments just before a storm.

We used to get great summer storms when I was growing up in Connecticut, and even better ones now in Iowa where my parents live, but we are seriously lacking them in California.

So you can imagine how excited I was.

cotopaxi storm 3

The new technique I wanted to try was based off a new way I've been creating sketches: I do a really fast, rough sketch with a ballpoint pen and then added in a layers of color on top.

Pens aren't exactly standard materials to use on canvas, but after struggling with not getting the fine lines I was looking for in other paintings, I figured I would it a shot.

cotopaxi storm 2

Love. Even though the finished piece doesn't look much at all like the original photograph (one of my standard problems!), I adored its luminous, half-sketched/half-painted look and how it captured that threatening weather that I love.

I'm excited to try this technique on some of the images from our Utah road trip, and maybe go a bit bigger?

You can check out the original painting here, or find prints here.

I hope everyone's having a good week! We're almost there!

xo Diana

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