Marina

The Dunes of Monterey, 12×48, oil on canvas

In days past, I often drove by this wondrous area of the south eastern dunes of Monterey Bay, but now find the area enchanting. Recently working on a new painting, I chronicled my efforts on Facebook as it progressed.

My weblog readers might be interested in the development and processes as things went along. Below are my posts from Facebook…


June 20, 2022. So, I have had this 12×48 inch canvas sitting in my studio for 10-15 years. It’s a bit of an odd size, and over the years contemplated on a good composition to fit it. So, this week, let’s try something…


June 21, 2022. An old adage is “paint what you know”. It is a good point, but artists should occasionally push themselves out of their comfort level. In the case of the odd size 12×48 inch canvas mentioned yesterday, I am going to paint what I know. We walk by this view at least several times a week near Marina, CA. Here is just a rough block in of the scene.


June 22 2022. Seems to be interest in the development of this odd sized 12×48 inch canvas, so here is today’s progress …

May not have a lot of time the rest this week to work on it, but stay tuned…


July 6, 2022. Back to the odd size painting (12×48 in) which has been on hiatus for a bit. Working all over the canvas now. Still working on the shape of the trees on the left. I actually scraped part of it off as it was overpowering the painting. Still a ways to go…


July 12, 2022. I did a little revamp on the 12×48 inch painting the last several days. I painted the large trees on the left several times, scraping and painting over. I still didn’t like it as they overpowered the rest of the painting, and didn’t give it the expansive view I wanted. So, I revamped for several days, painting them entirely out, repainting the background, and then a smaller tree. Here is the progression…the original trees, repainting the background, and then the result. I hope everyone agrees the effort was worth it!


July 18, 2022.The 12×48 painting still continues. Normally, I would have a painting like this done in about a week or two, if not sooner, however I have had a lot of distractions with houseguests and other things. You may not notice a lot of difference, but I put in a ‘separation layer’ of liquin, and then glazed some sunshine and atmosphere over the background areas. Also, similar to redoing the large trees on the left, I reduced the bushes on the right middle ground as they were too big and overpowering the view. Hopefully I’ll get this finished by the end of the week!


July 6, 2022.  Coming down the home stretch on this one. Just a little touchup here and there, and will consider it done…for now…


It helps living close to things you paint.  You can see things frequently, and then adjust your work accordingly.  We did a walk in the area a few days ago by the scene, and I noticed the prominent green plants have a bit of dead underbrush.  The green really contrasts with the reds and oranges of the ice plant, and a little underbrush modifies the effect.

In this painting, although true to the scene, I have moved a few elements around such as trees, bushes, etc. for a more pleasing composition.  Cardinal rule of any good landscape painting moves your eye around the piece without going off the edge.  Hopefully I accomplished that.  

For those familiar with the area, the general view is in Ft Ord Dunes State Park from the hillside near the Divarty underpass.    Monterey Bay is shown, and the distant shore is the Santa Cruz area.

For many years, going to my gallery representation in Carmel, participating in the Carmel Art Festival, etc., I drove right by this area to paint the rocky coastlines of Big Sur, the ice plant of Pacific Grove, and other more familiar attractions.  Now that I live in the area, the dunes of Marina and the south eastern shoreline of Monterey Bay beg to be painted.

I’ll consider this done for now. Final painting is shown here and above.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: