It’s day 8 of 30 Paintings in 30 Days – I made it through the first week! I found this rustic, geometrically cracked tree branch at the bottom of 3 Fingered Jack, an extinct shield volcano located in the Cascade Range.

Georgia O'Keefe, Deer's Skull with Pedernal

Georgia O’Keefe, “Deer’s Skull with Pedernal”

By taking the tree branch and setting it in a sea of sky blue pigmented wax it reminds me of one of my favorite artists, Georgia O’Keefe. The sky, often with clouds, was the backdrop to many of her paintings (see right). O’Keefe is close to my heart because reading “Portrait of an Artist: A Biography of Georgia O’Keefe” when I was a young woman inspired me to follow a creative path. She was a strong, female painter and I admired that she pursued her art career instead of compromising her life to conform to societal pressures. I’ve never tried to paint like O’Keefe but clearly I can’t escape being influenced by her work.

“Below the Glacier III”
6 x 6 inches
encaustic and tree branch on wood panel
Origin: 3 Fingered Jack, Mt. Jefferson Wilderness, Oregon
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The tree branch used in this painting was found near this snow melt stream in the Mt. Jefferson Wilderness in Central Oregon:

3 Fingered Jack, Mt. Jefferson Wilderness, Oregon

The paintings I create during the 30 Paintings in 30 Days challenge will be included in my NATURE CURATED series which captures the essence of place by encapsulating carefully chosen mementos nature has seemingly left behind in a thick bed of pigmented encaustic wax. To create these paintings I explore the ocean shore and forest floor to find the perfect, unique objects (shells, pine cones, driftwood and stones) to embed in a luscious layer of wax. All of these natural objects tells the story of its origin, like the smooth edges on driftwood illustrates the journey it took undulating back and forth against the rough ocean shore. Each three-dimensional fine art painting is unique, signed by me, ready to hang and includes the place of origin.