1 Pond + 4 Acres = 1 Year of Paintings by Dan Bartges
Created over the course of 12 months, these two dozen landscapes depict various views from just 4 acres of farmland near Ashland. The small plot seemed downright unremarkable at first, yet the longer I stood at the easel in all kinds of weather, the more I noticed the land's ever-changing character.
After the first painting, I went searching for the landowner for permission to continue my work on his farm, and I struck a bargain with him: In return for his not bush hogging around the cow pond for a year, I gave him a painting.
If I learned anything during the year, it was about the tremendous natural changes that happen all around us every hour of every day but usually go unnoticed. The eye and mind take in so much when we take the time to just stand still in one place and patiently observe.
The experience reminds me of what da Vinci once said about staring into a fire or at a stain on a wall -- that when given the chance, the mind will imagine all kinds of possibilities.