Hot December

Hot December
Figure in Landscape No. 16

Hot December 2005 Oil on Linen 500 x 1050mm $4500

This ia an angophora costata known also as the Smooth Barked Apple.  I have always loved the forms and the colours of this tree. What I didn’t realise until I began this series was that the colour is very seasonal.  I had assumed that I only saw angophoras when I saw the blaze of orange or pinks. I remember them from hiking as a scout around Sydney; from visiting my sister in Georges Hall, from in and around the Gosford; and from my love of the Blue Mountains.

What I didn’t realise was that most times I saw and identified angophoras was in the summer months.  So imagine my surprise when only a two weeks into painting a few of these trees the colours started bleaching and changing dramatically. Rain quickly washes away the pigment and sun fades them until they return to their soft grey undertones. But these tones are tinged with the hints of purples and lilacs and salmon pinks.

Each painting is painted exclusively on site and takes approximately ten weeks to complete. Traditional glazing techniques are used and this requires drying time between layers thus I work on six paintings at a time.  Consequently I spent a very busy few weeks painting the trunks before returning to the time consuming backgrounds. Next time I paint angophoras I shall have to start in hot December.

This angophoras has root system is another testament to the sub theme of these painting.

 “… suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.” Romans 5:4