The Painting of Keokea Picnic - First Steps

1. Inception

The first place my wife and I set foot on Maui was the upcountry hillsides of Keokea. Many afternoons we would pack a picnic lunch and gaze out on the beautiful landscapes. We found a little cottage on the hill and have now been here 40 years. Keokea is where I began my art career. 2013 is a significant milestone for me. It is both our 40th wedding anniversary and 40 years of painting Maui. I feel blessed to have been able to live and paint the beauty of this island.

This is a watercolor study that is the starting point for a much bigger painting. I will be painting it in oil during 2013 and posting occasional updates to the progress of the piece starting in the next few months.

For those of us who live in Kula, our mountain faces to the west. The majority of the homes face west until you get around the north or south sides of Haleakala. There are a few exceptions. If you live above Keokea Park on the rolling pastures of Polipoli Road, there are equally compelling views to the south southwest. The hills glide down though the warm afternoon air backlighting the trees and fence lines. Out on the horizon, Kahoolawe calms the water around Molokini from the open ocean. It calms the residents as well who occasionally take notice. This painting captures that mark on the compass.

2. The Preparation

3. The Watercolor Sketch

Keokea Picnic Watercolor SketchHere is a version of my watercolor sketch on a white background.

This is basically just the structure of the composition without many details.