Monday, July 13, 2009

New Painting, "King of the Hill Country"

King of the Hill Country, 30X40, oil on linen

Close-Up of brush work

There is no better fitting symbol for Texas, in my mind than the longhorn. An imposing animal and fiercely independent, the longhorn seems perfectly at home here today. Probably because the longhorn and Texas have such a proud history together. You could even say they've grown up together. Naturally, I placed this small herd in my favorite part of Texas, smack dab in the middle in Texas Hill Country.

Many thanks to Wally Penberthy, for taking me on a tour of his ranch in his jeep (all the bumps and bruises were worth it). The landscape is based on a hill on his place which we climbed one beautiful morning. The longhorns are owned by a nearby rancher which we drove out to see. They were happy to pose for me, at least till the truck came along and dripped off the new salt blocks in a distant field. I never knew they could runs so fast! And that was the end of the photo shoot.

"King of the Hill Country" is an idealized painting, complete with fields of blue bonnets and live oaks. At 30X40 inches it's one of the largest paintings I've done to date, but because it is an idealized view, it benefits from it's bigger size. I've included more detail in the foreground and reduced the amount of detail as it gives way to the middle ground then to the background. Just as the eye sees things.

This painting will be included in my upcoming one man show at the Bosque Arts Center, in Clifton Texas. Show opens on July 21 and runs through August 8th. I will be there for an artist's reception on Friday, July 24th, from 6-8 PM. It will be hot, but we'll have wine I'm told.....and dancing girls.....and cirque de soleil....annnd. Alright, maybe not, but we will have wine. And lots and lots of paintings and drawings. Thirty or so in all with prices to fit just about any budget. Limited time offer while supplies last.

Lunch Line, 24X40, oil on linen

I've also reworked "Lunch Line" a bit and will also be at the show. I've settled down the sky and distant mountain a bit, knocked down the intensity of the colors, and added dust with floating bits of hay, lit up by the sun. All in all a much better painting.


Karen Hargett said...

Yep I think you have captured the Texas hill country well here as well as the Longhorns! I'm afraid you're not going to see any bluebonnets when you come down next week though - just crunchy grass - it is way too HOT! We've hit 27 days over 100 - mostly 105s and it's not even August. I'm going out to the YO ranch for a 2 hour private tour to take pictures of the exotic animals they have there this Saturday - hopefully it won't be too hot for the animals and they will be out. If it goes well I want to go back in the spring.

BTW - I like what you did with the other painting - the light and hay dust are perfect. If I don't "talk" to you before you leave - have a great show.

Steve Atkinson said...

Yikes, I was afraid of that.

You will love the YO! The mounted cowboy in my painting "Cowboy Payday", is the wrangler from the YO. His name is Alex (not his original name), and he's originally from Italy and has so many stories. If you have the time, do yourself a favor and go on a trail ride with him.

They have a great exotic animal tour and you will be amazed at all the animals they have there. Not to mention the history of the ranch.Be careful of the camel, he spits. My favorite were the giraffes. They come right up and stick their heads in the bus looking for food.

Thank you for your good wishes for my upcoming show. I'm always happy to have an excuse to get back to Clifton and the Hill Country, even if it is hotter than H**

Serena said...

Beautiful Painting!!!!!!
I was looking for King of the Hill TV Show and got this amazing painting. Its really beautiful and good job...

Steve Atkinson said...

Thanks Serena, hope you come back and visit often!