Thursday, September 25, 2008

Back To The Vacation...Day Three

Well it's been awhile since I talked about our vacation. Everyone knows how life can just get in the way sometimes...not always a bad thing either! As you can see from the last post, I started an extremely large painting....50x40! Many people were amazed at how fast I "finished" it....sorry darlings....I am NOT finished! On closer inspection you can see that the hands are not done, the sheets need to be finished in one or two areas, some thin glazing here and there and the dogs finished off a bit....just a bit though. I like the semi-unfinished me it leaves an immediacy and spontaneity that a completely covered canvas does not have....unless it is a small piece done in one sitting. Upon looking closely at many paintings from some of the current and past masters that I thoroughly(seen in the list to the right) enjoy one can see transparent shadows, thin glazes and dry brushing that allow the canvas to show through. Then there are levels of thicker paint juxtaposed with the thin and medium layers that are so expressive I can hardly stand to look at the magnificent brushwork and color without weeping. Sargent, Zorn, and Schmid were and are masters at this as well as the names listed to the right. So to sum it up the painting is close to finished but for me now comes the hard part. I must think long and hard how the next stroke will add or detract from the the temperature and value reading it the right shape and where does it begin and where does it end. I have gotten past some of these issues....but, dang it, so much of it eludes me. All I can say to myself is this...more miles on the brush...paint what you see and not what you know.....and keep can always wipe it off until you get it right. I do a lot of that sometimes. When I was still teaching one thing I often said was....Paint the picture in your head first....that is why the first three days went so fast on such a large painting....but alas I neglected painting some of the physician heal thyself...! A final word on showing this painting..I have full consent of Max to show this image...we view it as a good painting with a good composition and it means something special to both of us...irregardless of who it is I paint. It was not meant to attract viewers or bloggers...I have plenty of work to post that is better than this one or worse. I just want to make things clear in case some are put off by subject matter and this is NOT directed at anyone. Okay? 'Nough said...:)
Second day of our vacation! When we awoke I immediately started thinking...the party for the Schmid Auction was tonight I kept thinking what would it be like? Who would we meet? We drove up two Fort Collins where we had our reservations....checked in and got ready for the party....Bellevue is about 45 Minutes away. We were there early enough that we decided to drive up there and make sure we found the place. That was definitely the smart think to do!!
Stove Prairie Ranch is and astounding citadel of Morgan horses and cattle nestled in the Rocky Mountains, Rist Valley . You have to see this astonshing land to appreciate it! The ranch is huge and anyone can drive through it as long as they stay on the road. Several other ranches and homes are built on this prairie...all of them charming! We drove up the Rist Canyon road and stopped to take pictures of the Old Flowers house and the Bellevue store. Once past the Auction site we started to wonder if we were lost....I looked at our print out of the directions and it said to keep going until Old Flowers Road. Onward! We drove through the beautiful rockies and remembered that distinct light and air from my years in Utah....I thought how much I missed it and the simple living off the land life I had while I lived there. Then I remembered the work....the milking ....the feeding.....the tilling and toiling....the butchering...and all of the 1oo's of daily chores that consumed my life before painting seriously. Naw!!...I don't miss it that much!!! I am quite happy where I am in my life right this very is the right place at the right time!
We reached th top of what seemed to be a hill and over and down we went...12% grade....from my truckdriving days I remembered that this was not your average 6% to 7%( although I have seen 17%).....and I could see it was long way down.....I can't imagine it with snowpack and/or ice! Down we went at the bottom of the hill was Old Flowers Road....we drove through this stately an well planned ranch and were completely amazed at the size of it. There were many barns and out shelters....what seemed to be two guest homes...many more buildings....a huge covered arena with patio where they were setting things up for the party that night...and capping it all off an amazingly large house sitting up on a hill looking over the estate...everything made from wood and natural rock...stunning!!! I took many pictures some are on the slide show at the top of this page.
It was finally time to attend the party. We drove up to the first stop where my name was checked on the guest list and then we were waved ahead when it was okay. The there was a second stop...where my name was checked once again....very secure...gate crashers beware! On up to an open prairie where we were assigned parking. On to the party. We came up to a huge covered arena and walked through massive wooden carved doorway......Wow!! We were greeted by a third group checking invitations and I was given an artist name tag and Max was given a guest tag. Horse stables lined each side of the center walkway....a charming tack room, off to one side, decorated in Mission style oak and Arts and Crafts accessories. It was immaculate, the horses were gorgeous and by there friendliness and contentment one could see they were handled often and well. After visiting with the horses (which everyone did! How could anyone resist?) we came into the arena. Huge wooden beams were decorated with tiny white icicle lights....The fine sand was wetted and tamped down for the party...tables were arranged and decorated beautifully through the entire center and the whole seating area was roped off. A bar was set up in two opposing corners and the some of the food and barbeque where set up outside. We stopped and got a cocktail for me and a beer for Max and wandered out to the patio (name tag in place) where the quests were mingling. We didn't know anyone there personally but as the evening went on many interesting people came up to us and we visited and chatted amiably including Richard himself who asked me to find his "lovely wife Nancy"and send her over to him. Mr. Schmid is not only a genius of an artist but is equally well versed in many always learning something new and a true gentleman and loving husband with a very wry sense of humor. I have very high regard for him not just as an artist but as a human being.
We were called to dinner and filled our plates and found a table. The guests greeted us and we began a wonderful conversation. Max struck up a conversation with the man sitting next to him...Tom Sutherland. Now this is amazing....he turned out to be THE Tom Sutherland who was kidnapped and held hostage in Beirut for 2354 days. We met his wife who was equally charming! Everyone at the table was gregarious and we all had a wonderful time with great food. We were called to attention that the ceremonies and introductions were to begin...and also that a special event was planned for us. Thanks were given to all who planned, participated and attended the event. Wes Rutt who pretty much is the glue of the auction was introduced. He is a great guy and remembers every artist at the auction. He works very hard to make sure the event comes off well.
After the introductions we were told that we were going to be shown there top pick horses and new colt....which is why the seating area was roped off. They stunning animals were turned out and put through there paces around the ring by their trainer Kathy! I have had a little experience with horses and these were beauties with perfectly arched necks and real high steppers....certainly to be reckoned with in the championships the owner planned to enter. We visited some more got a bite of dessert and decided it was time to go home. Big day tomorrow and we were both tired but very happy.
I will end now as I sometimes I spend a long time writing too many words. I need to get back to work and Max has taken on the job of repairing and painting the window sills and trim of this 100 and something year old home. You know he always thinks he may not get these repairs right...but he always takes his time and thinks things through before making a move....something I admire as I am rather impulsive often to my detriment! Just another reason we are good for each other.
Until tomorrow, Theresa


Barbara M. said...

I love your blog. Is something going on about your big painting? I'm just asking. It is so wonderful -- don't pay any attention to naysayers.
You are a fantastic artist!!!!!

As for your description of the vacation -- how great. All I can say is I love reading what you write. I feel like I'm right there. And that is so nice.


Erika Nelson said...

Hey lovely Theresa I was viewing your slideshow last night and marveled at Stove Prairie property and the Bellvue store so cute! And Richard Schmid and family - are the girls both his and Nancy's kids? Their relationship seems fresh, still in love. And he does strike me an approachable nice guy.

Well I guess I won't be free-wheeling down Old Flowers Road WHOAH! Wow that's my dream to own a big enough land that's dotted with houses where relatives live so we can have a little village.

What was the menu at the party? I'm always curious about food lol

I'm so glad Max is such a good sport about letting you show us the masterpiece. And you're so cool to show work in progress shots. I totally love it already! Is the dog hiding his face you biggest baby?

Theresa Rankin said...

No Barbara nothing is really going on....sometimes people get the wrong idea ...I was just being clear about my intentions. I always have so much to say that sometimes I feel like I may be boring people....but then again I write and paint for me first! I love having your responses and communications as much as enjoy seeing your wonderful work.

Theresa Rankin said...

Hi Dear Erika! Thank you for always visiting and responding.....Richards two daughters are from his first marriage and they are both turning into great painters with an identifiable Schmid flair! He is very gracious and approachable! The menu was all sorts of things there was BBQ lamb with a mango ginger sauce...pork on a skewer...a large assortment of fruit, veggies, little sandwiches and exotic cheeses...smoked salmon, pasta salads and assorted pastries. They were all prepared with Nouvelle Cuisene flair.
There is excellent handicap access to the auction and the party would have been no problem either....other then the road to the ranch (which I assume you would be taking by car rather than hair blowing in the breeze screaming whee all the way down the hill while freewheeling) the party and ranch are also accessible.
Max is a dear and very open minded( to The dog (Freedom) closest to me is actually Inez's (Max's daughter) baby....I am her surrogate mama when she is away! The dog in the front is Magic, Max's dog of 9 years....more my baby now that I feed her! And the cat is also his...she is Okra Winfrey!

Erika Nelson said...

I love talking to you :)

Theresa Rankin said...

Same here!!!....:)