Friday, June 29, 2012

The Bronze Lady
8 x 10
oil on canvas
 Thanks to my friend T. K. Riddle, our group has a new and very interesting place to paint. We went to Chandor Gardens in T. K'.s town of Weatherford, just west of Fort Worth.These gardens were at the home of a well known portrait artist Douglas Chandor. He painted the wealthy including several U.S. presidents, Eleanor Roosevelt, and a coronation portrait of Queen Elizabeth that hangs in the British embassy in Washington D.C. He and his wife lived half the time in New York and the other half of the time in Texas. While in Texas he spent a great deal of time designing and planting the gardens of his estate.

This was the view that inspired my painting.

Chandor was inspired by British and Asian gardens. The grounds have a bowling green, ornamental trees and flowers, pools with koi, one with a stone Chinese junk, a large waterfall, streams, bridges,  arbors, European boxwoods, cacti, fountains, ornamental stonework, etc... Chandor designed his gardens to be like outdoor rooms so that wherever you are there are interesting and beautiful views. These gardens are now maintained and owned by the town of Weatherford.
Arbors and flowers at the garden.
I had never been to these gardens, and in fact I knew very little about them. When I arrived it was almost overwhelming. There were so many views that were inspiring I had a hard time deciding what to paint. As many of you know I love working in my own gardens and was inspired to paint and plant.
An entrance to the house over an oriental bridge over a stream.
In the end my love of sculpture dictated my choice of a subject, a fountain with a beautiful sculpture of a lady. I loved all the greens of the background along with the blue greens of the sculptures patina. Also the temperatures were in the 100s and I had shade where I painted, that helped me make my choice too.
Another view of the house and grounds.
In addition to T. K. being there, Olivette Hubler, Joyce Thomas, and Leslie Talty were there painting. We ordered lunch and had it delivered, most of us had chicken salad sandwiches, chips, iced teas, and homemade cookies, from a place called Yesterdays. The food was great, and it was a beautiful place to eat.
Another view of the gardens.

After lunch we painted several more hours. Olivette, T. K., and I enjoyed painting there so much that we all joined the garden so we can paint there any time. The lady who ran the gift shop invited us to show and sell our work in the gift shop which I am sure we will do.
 It was a very nice day.

An interesting character statue in the garden.

Koi in one of the ponds,

The Chinese junk statue.

A beautiful blue green pool with the Chinese junk.

T.K. painting the ferns.

Olivette painting near the house, the north windows of Chandor's studio are behind her.

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