Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Southern Catalpa Trees at Chatham, Watercolor

Almost finished with this painting of Chatham Manor's Southern Catalpa trees. These trees are located on the north side of Chatham in Stafford County. The mansion was used as a hospital during the Civil War. Walt Whitman described the scene at the hospital for "worst case soldiers". The trees at this time were 25 years old and are located just outside the north window of the mansion. Sparing the details of Whitman's description, I will just say that my interpretation of the trees was greatly influenced by the images of that description. I couldn't help but see the ghostly, skeleton images in the trees and couldn't escape the feeling of a cyclic organic growth. The wholes in the trees: most likely precisely cut to have access to the metal poles inside that support the weight of the foliage of these hollow trunk trees.


Elizabeth Seaver said...

I love the watery, beautiful color on the ground. I don't think I paid attention to that when you showed me earlier this week. I was too wrapped up in your horror story! I'm glad you finished this, and I think it is successful, even though it was hard to push through the discomfort!

Elizabeth said...

I love how this painting has developed since class time!! The addition of the violets and the darkening of the skeletal trunk is very dramatic!!! Good job on de gorifying the story, but the influence is clearly there!! I hope that you are really happy with this result- I think that it is wonderful!!!

Thanks for sharing it with us!!


K. Henderson Art said...

I like this a lot. I like the washy watercolor, the colors and how it flows together