4x6 inches, watercolor on paper
NC Wyeth's skies are like visual soundtracks, amplifying and establishing the emotional impact of whatever's happening on his foreground stage. They're not flat, remote backdrops, however dramatic. They're fully three-dimensional parallel kingdoms, as explorable and enticing as any landed environment—just use your wings.
He starts with real cloud phenomena well observed, then enlivens the colors, enhances the altitude, clarifies the forms, turns up the lights. It's all very Art Deco, decorative and seductive—apotheosis in a can—yet muscular, vigorous, heart-felt… I love it.
Sometimes, after a bout of hard work and struggle, you slip into that sweet space (the Flow, I guess it's called) where good things just happen, every note is right, each gesture rings the bell. It's the reason for doing the work in the first place, and the justification for showing up—and staying well equipped—on a regular basis: If you're not out on the highway, you'll never catch a ride.
Today's little piece reminds me of that; it seemed to happen in a second, but was a long time coming.