The Artwork of

William Lathrop

Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore
Artist in Residence - 2005
Entry Date: 09/25/2005 - Sunday

Today was rainy. I started out by exploring the White Birch Forest by 12-Mile Beach Campground. I wandered through the grove for a while before finding a painting spot along the road that winds from the main road into the campground.

This morning's painting was a struggle though the results are growing on me. Perhaps a little work in the studio will give it what I missed on site. I think the problem is I started out painting like Richard Schmid: thinner paint, more detailed drawing; even though these are not the qualities I have found compelling in the work that has turned out in recent days. Rather I find the work I'm pleased with has more of a Thomson or Marc Bohne feel to it.

Richard Schmid is one of the greatest living painters. Perhaps not so in recognition - I don't think they know who he is in New York - but greatest in terms of all out skill. What I find compelling in his work is his economy. By this I mean, he uses a minimum of brushstrokes - but each one is perfect. His color is utterly amazing, and his edges - where he chooses to blur and where he creates a sharp edge, creates such a sense of life. I actually find his paintings to look more real that photographs - though they also clearly look like paint as well. This is the dichotomy that is so critical for me in effective painting - to retain the illusion of viewing the subject while maintaining the obvious appearance of brushwork in the paint.

Rain was another factor during the morning painting. There was a constant drizzle with occasional breezes blowing water from the leaves of the trees. I was constantly moping water off the painting. I had set up working from the back of the van. There are 3 doors in the back of the van. One, with the window in it, swings open to the top - I used it for an overhang, combined with my umbrella. I have often thought I could paint in the van during inclement weather - but that hasn't proved practical - the windows are tinted and I really am too tall to fit in there with any degree of comfort.

In the end, I started putting paint on more thickly, and this effort lead to more satisfactory results.

It is almost October, the woods are still very green - though I have seen an occasional maple branch with some color.

All Materials Copyright © William Lathrop, 2007
Last Modified on June 05, 2007