Tuscan Lifestyle ~ Essence of the Earth

Coming to Italy I wanted to somehow capture the Tuscan lifestyle in my paintings. How to do such a thing, I couldn’t begin in imagine. That didn’t stop me from trying.

Five weeks in Tuscany, I have met people who capture the essence of the earth in their wines, olive oils, pastas, tiramisus and laughter. They take their time. Let fruits ripen. Draw moisture from deep roots. Squeeze the essence of every precious drop.

tuscan lifestyle
Val d’Arno, oil, 16″ x 20″

Tuscan Lifestyle

Two days of heavy rain gave me the opportunity to do some fermenting of my own. I laid out all of my paintings, side by side. I grouped them by palette, size and subject.

I began with the landscapes. Are these the finest essence of this landscape I can paint? I sorted them by color and size. As with grapes or olives, their differences and similarities became apparent.

For two days I painted, refining colors. At the beginning of the second day I noticed a dream-like quality emerging. I like the idea that this collection instills dreams with landscapes. How might I further this quality?

Val d’Arno is a painting I started en plein air the first week we arrived in Poggio Alla Croce. I have continued refining it every few days. In the process, I feel the connection to my early work in pastel.

It has been my dream for many years to have my paint brush speak in unison with the raw earthy pigments of pastel.

View from Assisi