Thursday, August 13, 2015

Contrails over the Columbia River

Columbia and Contrails. 2015, Oil on Linen. 18" x 36". 
Still interested in contrails and the way they reflect light and shadow. This is the Columbia Gorge, one of my favorite areas in the northwest.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Artist-in-Residence at Petrified Forest National Park!

This winter I applied for and was accepted into the Artist-in-Residence program at Petrified Forest National Park. This is a program administered by the National Parks in more than 50 parks, including some of the most iconic ones: Grand Canyon, Great Smoky Mountains, Zion, Glacier.

It's competitive - more than 60 artists applied to Petrified Forest and 15 were accepted. There are sculptors, a cellist, an installation artist, photographers and me, the sole painter. Most of the programs provide housing, often in historic cabins.

You can find more information about the National Parks program here.

This is the charming historic casita I'll be staying in.
I've been preparing my supplies for a month: building linen covered panels (8 at 20"x30" plus a large stack of small panels) and ordering and organizing paints, pencils, papers, brushes, the works. My husband is going with me (he's a geologist) so we'll camp and hike after the 2-week residency. That's another pile of supplies for the Subaru. Yes, it's a road trip! Yes, we are excited!

While there I will be focused on the skies and the road. Petrified Forest National Park is a sliver of land just south of the Navajo reservation, and it straddles a historic section of Route 66. I'm hoping for beautiful stars, crazy storms and clear light.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Skies and more skies

'The Day the Clouds Blew Through'. Oil on Linen. 30" x 60".
My solo show at the Lucia Douglas Gallery went well. Many thanks to all who attended! I was overwhelmed by the support and sales and so glad to see you all.

I'm back to stretching large hunks of linen onto frames and priming all of it. The work begins anew.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Moonset over Bellingham Bay

Moonset over Bellingham Bay. ©2014Lisa McShane. Oil on Linen Panel. 16"x20"
My office window faces west and this past summer and into the fall we had stunning and colorful sunsets. This day, the moon set at twilight.

We've also seen an increase in air traffic at our nearby airport, creating contrail patterns in the sky.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Columbia River Gorge

'End of the Day, Gorge'. 2014, Oil on Linen. 44" x 44".
The Columbia River Gorge has been a focus in my studio for the past month or so, ever since my husband and I took a trip there in September. It was a road trip that started in Spokane, Washington and took us down the edge of the state on the Palouse Scenic Highway, into Oregon and the Wallowa Valley. 

We visited the John Day area, a sprawling National Park complex that we both found to be interesting and stunning, but with no accommodation or food. We ended up reaching the gorge near Celilo Falls at dusk. 

I've scheduled a show, Lucia Douglas Gallery, this February. Right now that feels just around the corner and I'm spending long hours painting.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Ridges of Eastern Washington

Road from Jump Off Joe. ©2014, Lisa McShane. Oil on Linen. 18" x 36"
I'm delivering a commissioned painting today. It's of a road through wheat fields on a ridge in Eastern Washington.

It's funny to me to be painting this road - this is where a large group of us went sledding in high school. I think we were supposed to be in class but there was snow.

This is also where my husband used to run with his friends in high school, high above Kennewick with great views in every direction. He's got a great blog on geology here. Artists - you don't even want to know how many readers he has (yes, people love geology!)

Click here for information on hiking in the area. The post I like to describes the ridge as "one of only 18 peaks total in Washington state to be isolated from a taller mountain by a radius of 25 miles of more." It's not that it's tall, it's just on its own out there.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Fields of Lucania. ©2014, Oil on Linen. 20" x 30".
I am drawn to views of golden fields and skies. Simple farmland. I paint these over and over and sometimes I hesitate to show people. These paintings don't usually sell and it's clear to me now that these are images I paint just for myself.

Practicing skies? Maybe. Thinking through light and atmosphere? Sure. Playing with shapes and composition? A little. But to me there's just something about these sweeping views of simple things. This one is in Basilicata, southern Italy, where we saw beautiful fields of wheat grown on a smaller scale than we're used to in Washington State.