Local Color

May 18, 2011

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Previous Artist of the Week Alejandro De Narváez had an excellent point in the video when he said he was inspired by the rich tropical colors of his home in Columbia: regions can have a color palette.  I think of this in particular when I think of the landscapes Georgia O’Keeffe did of the American Southwest.   The Western paintings of Frederic Remington and Regionlist Andrew Wyeth also come to mind.

Christina’s World by Andrew Wyeth, 1948

Chicago is not inclined to a particular color palette that I’ve noticed, except for a brief few days to a week or two in the spring.  The darker blue shade of the winter sky has not faded away and the yellowish buds on the deciduous trees start to turn a particular shade of lime green.  This brief time period has two intense colors competing with each other for my attention: bright green and a deep blue.  The earliest flowering trees add their colors also during this time, mostly white and some pinks.  Then the weather warms, the sky heads towards its paler summer blue and the tree leaves grow bigger and turn various darker hues of green.

Overcast days just leave the nearly neon green baby tree leaves as the brightest color around.  Only on a clear day with strong sunlight does the green / blue color pair really show itself.  I was able to catch some photos with a DSLR; these are straight shots and not ‘Shopped at all, although Tumblr did compress the images a bit.  I’ll have to do something with this “spring regional” color palette in the future.

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