There were several groups of sunbathers at the Audubon Riverview Park (located on the Mississippi River levee behind the Audubon Zoo), and I caught a couple here. The article I had read demonstrated how you could scribble the pencil pigment on the paper to create a little paper palette, and then lift pigment off the paper palette with a wet brush to apply to your painting. I tried that with limited success. I did better shading layers of dry pencil to fill in color in the painting, and then using my wet brush to mix and blend the colors on the paper. Very much a learning experience! I did not have a green pencil, so was mixing my yellows and blues to achieve the greens of the grass and tree leaves.
Here is my second sketch, of the scene in City Park behind the Museum of Art. I had a little more success this time in blending different shades of green, and also getting a little stronger pignmentation. Still need some more darks for contrast, but it is a learning experiment here. Note the ibis in the foreground. It was amazing that there were flocks of ibises in the park that were begging to be fed along with the ducks, geese and seagulls. Also several coots in the ponds. Such a beautiful day and a good feeling that the park has recovered so much since Hurricane Katrina.
We also spent some time at Bayou Savage National Wildlife Area, which is located along Highway 90 east of New Orleans. This swamp was also heavily impacted by Hurricane Katrina, with alot of salt water being trapped behind levees and killing the freshwater vegetation. I took lots of photos of the swamp with dead trees rising up to the crystal blue skies. But, there were also observable indications of recovery here as well, with new plantings of cypress, hackberries and other shrubs in the swamp. Here are a couple of photos from Bayou Savage.
Me in front of the spartina marses on the south side of Hwy 90.
One of those haunting scenes of the dead trees rising out of the impacted marshes on the north side of Hwy 90.
And before I close I just have to include a photo I took at the New Orleans Museum of Art. NOMA is celebrating their 100th birthday this year. There were several paintings from the permanent collections on display, and I really enjoyed the Modern Art gallery. I was pleasantly surprised to discover this wonderful painting by Richard Diebenkorn! My artist friend Conroy Hudlow had recently loaned me his book on Diebenkorn, an abstract expressionist painter from the mid-century who also dabbled in figurative art. I fell in love with his use of color, and was pleasantly surprised to see that NOMA had one of his figurative masterpieces in their collection. Here is the woman on the porch!