A Sweet Bunch of Lemons

"Limones" 9 x 12 chalk pastel on Canson Mi-Teintes paper

This little bunch of lemons was growing on a small, young tree. It's the time of year when the trees in Fallbrook are loaded with citrus fruit, and this tree was no exception. Since the fire in 2007 wiped out so many avocado trees, many people are replanting different types of fruit, such as lemons.

I used a lot of darks in the background, so I could emphasize the bunch of lemons. I also did very little smearing, except to blend the core shadows of the fruit.

I've been focusing more on local scenery in my paintings, since it's been so nice outside. Fallbrook is full of beautiful views, both up close and in the distance. The nice thing about finding inspiration so close to home is that I know how things look in all the different types of lighting throughout the day, and can choose when to take reference photos that I think will make good paintings (I would love to sit and paint plein aire, but that won't be an option until the little one gets older or the days get longer).

It's also a great way for me to share the little things that inspire me each day-- things I often take for granted, but appreciate once I take a few minutes to stop and look at them. When we first moved to this area, I would sit outside for hours, drinking in the view and watching the wildlife. Now that I'm so pressed for time, I enjoy expressing my admiration for all of the things outside.


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