Thursday, August 21, 2014

"Henry David Thoreau", My Nibblefest Contest Entry for August's 'Forest Creatures' Theme

"Henry David Thoreau": acrylics on 6 x 8 canvas panel (permanently mounted to an 8 x 10 rustic wooden board)

So what do you think of when you think of 'Forest Creatures'....?  Such is the theme for August's Nibblefest Art Contest .   The above is my interpretation.  I suppose I could have taken a more 'literal' approach, but, as anyone who reads this blog (if there actually is anyone still reading this blog, lol) knows, I generally prefer to take a more literary approach when it comes to the Nibblefest themes.  Therefore one of the first things to pop into mind for me when reflecting upon 'Forest Creatures', was the old tome, "Walden: Life in the Woods", by the classic 19th century author, Henry David Thoreau.  Mr. Thoreau went off and lived for two years on the remote property of his buddy, Ralph Waldo Emerson, in a self-built cabin tucked in the woods, along the shores of a pond, as an experiment in simple living (then he wrote about it).  Worked for me, so I went with it...

Once I knew I wanted to paint a tribute portrait of Thoreau, I dug around in my stash of second-hand frames and painting supports and came across what I decided was the perfect thing to use.  As I've mentioned in this blog previously (numerous times), years ago I made the decision to forestall buying any new art supplies (excepting paint and brushes) in favor of supports I can either make myself, or find second hand.  Since then I've amassed quite the collection of second-hand frames and wood plaques and the like.  One of these was a small canvas panel that had been permanently mounted with metal brackets onto a very (very!) heavy, very (very!) rustic chunk of darkly stained, textured wood.  It was leftover, unwanted, after a local charity garage sale, and so I schlepped it home with me to save it from the landfill, but without any idea of what I might actually get around to using it for, being as that it was rather...unique?  Well, with its 'old-timey' look, it turned out to be the perfect thing for my particular subject matter.  Not to mention fairly appropriate I think too, what with the whole 'forest'-y themed thing we've going here (because what represents Forest more than a big, heavy chunk of actual wood plank....?).

Side view.  Thick chunk of wood!

The following is my auction description...:

"Henry David Thoreau"

My entry for this month's Nibblefest Art Contest (NFAC),  the theme for August being 'Forest Creatures', features a tribute portrait of the venerable author, Henry David Thoreau.  Painted in acrylics on a unique, second-hand 8" x 6" canvas panel permanently mounted onto a heavy and rustic 10" x 8" wooden board (see side view photograph), this original painting is signed and ready to hang.

When reflecting upon this month's theme, 'Forest Creatures', one of the first things to come to mind was the classic 1854 tome "Walden: Life in the Woods", by Henry David Thoreau, wherein he writes about to his personal experience with the simple life while residing in a self-built cabin within a natural setting on Walden Pond, surrounded by forest...: 

"....I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. ... I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life, to live so sturdily and Spartan-like as to put to rout all that was not life, to cut a broad swath and shave close, to drive life into a corner, and reduce it to its lowest terms, and, if it proved to be mean, why then to get the whole and genuine meanness of it, and publish its meanness to the world; or if it were sublime, to know it by experience, and be able to give a true account of it in my next excursion...."

  ~Henry David Thoreau

To see all the lovely 'Forest Creature' themed artwork this month, click HERE.....