SNOW ON THE BEACH ACRYLICS ON CEDAR W/RED OAK FRAME WINTER 2019
The beginning of winter was so mild that I started to wonder if we would go the entire season without snow. And then it happened: Snowmageddon! That snow we experienced really generated a lot of interesting photographs, and one in particular really stirred up some memories. It was a friend’s photo of snow on the beach by Neah Bay. The first time I saw this phenomenon was back in the winter of 1975-76 while living down at Ozette. I remember being absolutely amazed to see it as I associated the beach with hot summer days. I just couldn’t imagine ever seeing snow and sand in conjunction. To this day I still think it’s one of the coolest things to see, and it moved me to paint my perception of snow on the beach. Inspiration for the motifs used in the design came from Japanese art. The flowing water, rounded mounds of snow, and protruding grasses are all modified from Rinpa School paintings. The group of shorebirds in flight were directly taken from Japanese textiles showing plovers (chidori). One particular work, Plovers and Waves by Nakamura Hochu was particularly inspirational. The overall composition is in the handscroll (e-maki) format where I had to work within the restrictions posed by a long but narrow field on which to paint. I made the frame out of red oak using pegged, hand-joined, mortise-and-tenon construction methods. I used the Japanese technique (shou-sugi-ban) of charring and oiling the oak to finish the frame.