15 Day Challenge – Trees, Day 6


Years ago the land that our neighborhood was built on was a cattle ranch and many of the old native trees still thrive, we have several in our backyard.  I think the trees are Post Oak, if not that specimen, perhaps in that family.

The trees are known for their height, massive trunks and long, thick gnarly limbs, they are truly magnificent to look at – especially when the sun begins to set and gorgeous light and shadows play off the branches and leaves.  I’ve wanted to paint these trees for the longest time at close-range, but to be honest they intimated me – what better time to deal with this head-on.  Exact purpose of the 15 Day Challenge.

For this oil pastel study (7×5) I choose my favorite Post Oak that just happens to be located outside my 2nd story studio window.  It’s here when I paint that I have the pleasure of not only seeing this beautiful tree, but also watching many visitors from birds (Cardinals, Flycatchers, Blue-jays, Blue Herons, Hawks and Egrets) to squirrels – all with their favorite spots to hangout and watch the world go by.

I choose to paint the tree as a close-up view and perhaps will do a couple more showing the sunset and one of the entire tree as a mid-range view.  Whew, finally got the first one out-of-the-way ~

Texas Oak, Day 6

Texas Oak, Day 6

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About Mary

Oil Pastelist
This entry was posted in Challenges: Subject Matter Studies, Trees. Bookmark the permalink.

22 Responses to 15 Day Challenge – Trees, Day 6

  1. A tree as well as an artist tutorial-love it!

  2. ladyfi says:

    What a wonderful tree!

  3. aFrankAngle says:

    Well done. An artist at a local studio was telling me about the difficulty he had with trees (in the distance).

    • Mary says:

      Thank you Frank! Middle-ground will be my biggest challenge, the close-ups have been fun but later this week I’ll start working on mid-range distance – keeping my fingers crossed.

  4. violetski says:

    Lovely! Beautifully done dear Mary❤️

  5. Gallivanta says:

    Excellent! You are really embracing the challenge.

  6. Love the soft background and the many branches, nice study.

    • Mary says:

      Thank you Eva. These trees are easier painting from a distance – but I have so many unique photographs of the gnarly limbs bathing in sunlight and shadows I’ve got to try my hand with these close-ups.

  7. M-R says:

    Stop me if I’ve said this before … but as far as I’m concerned, Mary, you can post your paintings of trees till the cows come home …

    • Mary says:

      Ha, will have to go find those cattle that used to graze on this land! Thank you as always M.R. for your support and encouragement!

  8. Francesca says:

    Lovely! The color that you picked for the background is fabulous!

  9. Leya says:

    Lovely tree, Mary! I have a deep and warm love for trees – you are lucky to have these beauties up close!

  10. Beautifully done, Mary! Loving this series… 🙂 xx

    • Mary says:

      Thanks Marina – I’m so glad you love it. The series has been really helpful in forcing me to think and consider trees as subjects. I hope the benefits will show in my future work – have a wonderful week!

  11. dorannrule says:

    Trees always fascinate me. I have a good feeling about this one and you have captured its stability and strength.

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