“Along the C&0 Canal”

FINISHED PAINTING: “Along the C& O Canal” (17 1/2 x 24) oil on linen panel
Available for purchase at http://www.jeaneansongcomartin.com

This next painting was a real challenge for me. I am glad that I have a plein air reference which really helps to nail the color correctly as photographs do not always represent the true color and the value contrast are not true. The weather had changed dramactically. Most of the leaves had dropped so there really was no point to returning to the original spot.

On the Easel Day 1. My set up using a small study and photographic reference and if course my memory of the day which felt so warm for this time of year.
Continuing to develop the composition and forms using warm earth tones, burnt Sienna and a touch of ultramarine blue and a tiny bit of white.

Color Stage. trying to keep applying color in large masses. scrubbing in thin passages not too thick as to allow for changes later.

“C&O Canal path”. middle stage

This painting could be considered finished but I think one more session will clarify areas that are still bothering me mostly on the right half and top left section of the work.

Getting close to finish. Continuing to develop the forms. adding some detail, refining areas. This is the dangerous part. There is a chance the painting could be ruined and the freshness of the beginning lost but it is necessary. Simple direct painting does not go through this “layering” process but with a sustained painting there are subtle changes that you can not achieve with a quick direct approach. The challenge for me is to keep the initial “first fire”. the thing that made this painting so attractive and not detract from that.

“C&O Canal Path”. (20×24) oil on linen panel

I think this painting is completed. It was a challenge to keep the freshness of a plein air painting which is what I hoped to achieve. I am pleased with the “layering” process which gives this painting an additional depth due to multi layers. I love this canal and hope to get back out there this spring to discover more scenes of beauty.


  1. Hi Jeanean, Love your paintings of the C & O Canal. This is right in my back yard, so if you ever want company, let me know and I’ll come and paint with you. I live in River Falls.Too bad that most of the canal is dried up and the barge is in dry dock. When the canal is filled with water, the rangers/workers dress in period costume and the barge pulled by the mules. A really great scene to paint. Penny


    Liked by 1 person

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