Skip navigation

This is for you, Ryan!  ( Ryan from asmalltowndad’s weblog has suggested that I needed to paint him fishing in my plein air painting that includes a pond on the property)

I had forgotten about this painting hiding in my portfolio from the past.  Four years ago, a friend of mine and I would paint outdoors in the country on our days off . On the day I began this, my friend was suffering with allergies and we had to leave the scene prematurely. I had my drawing of the tree trunks and the creek and the far side completed and that was it.  It was obvious that this was a fishing spot as the ground was flattened out and there was a path leading to it from the road.  I painted the scene from memory and added the boy and his dog.  I think this was the first painting that I began texturing leaves and trees like I do today. I also used a white crayon for wax resist on the fishing line and sandpapered the surface of the water in the creek.


  1. So, this is Ryan in the painting? I would have sworn he is older than that! Just shows you that you never know on the Internet 😀 It doesn’t hurt to be careful, especially when someone comes up with funny things, like tag games and such… 😀 Doesn’t it seem just a little fishy?…

    Beautiful painting, Leslie! Live figures introduce a special meditative air to already slow and thoughtful lolling river. But for me your tree trunks have stolen the show, as usual. I would recognize your tree trunks anywhere, don’t need a signature to know them to be yours.

    • Thank-you, Alex, for that comment on the tree trunks. I believe it was this painting, in particular, where I began adding extra colors and texturing landscapes. Prior to this one I swished my brush along and there was very little contrast. I remember Ryan talking on several posts of his boyhood days in the woods. Since he is “fishy”, now, I figured he has always been “fishy”! LOL 🙂 I really liked that last portrait you did!

  2. Nope it’s Ryan, I’m that young and that handsome! LOL
    This is great Leslie, ask anybody in my family and they will tell you, almost everyday of my younger years were spent sitting on the bank of a lake or creek, bare feet and shirtless.
    I’m honored you thought of me. Thank you!

    • I remember you saying that on previous posts. You took us on one of your walks through the woods down there, too. I figured this could be you and NEVER BORED! Thanks for the visit and the comments that prompted me to post this! Such fun!

  3. Sweet, Leslie. I particularly like the texture on the tree trunks — oh, and the color choices you made. Great work, as usual, my friend.

    • This is not an advantage I have over photographers, anymore. With digital, they can create all sorts of color and textures. I like your photography, though, that relys on what you see and the knowledge of your cameras that help you capture it. Thanks, Kate! Has it cooled down yet? I can not imagine…..our summer was so hot, I won’t miss it for awhile.

  4. What do you mean Fishy… I’m not Fishy, smelly yes, but Fishy! Why Leslie what do you mean by this? LOL

    • I was responding to Alex’s comment about your “goings on” on your blog posts. I looked up the definition of “fishy” and found suspicious and “up to something” as a definition. Thought it was great that your wanting a fishing picture and up to something “fishy” goes together! LOL Leave it to Alex to come up with a creative connection like that. Laughing still! 🙂

  5. This is peaceful – the trees, dog, rock, and water are all friends to the fisherman, I think.

    • What a lovely thought, Jennifer! Your respect for nature and the way in which you write about it causes me to have faith that there are more people, like you, who see nature in this way. Thank-you for your visit and comment!

  6. Yes, Ryan is definitely fishy these days. I still wonder what he’s up to. he he

    This is beautiful, Leslie!! I LOVE the beautiful tree trunks and the posture of the dog. It’s as though the dog heard a branch crack under your foot (while you were hiding back there painting) and he was looking to see where the noise came from. The whole painting is just wonderful!!!

    • Thank-you, Beth. I like how you described the dog looking over his shoulder. This is one painting that I know is edgy, but I have saved it. I think it is more about the story and the fact that I’d found some way to render texture that I could live with and improve upon. The fact that it fit Ryan’s request was a plus…. 🙂

  7. This is such a universally appealing subject. As a boy I liked nothing better than to explore a creek with cane pole in hand…would have been nice though to have a dog then. Interesting range of techniques you used to create this painting.

    • Thank-you, Al. I think your idea of this being universal may have been another reason I have held on to this. This was a cool place away from the rest of the world to be for awhile. Seemed only fitting to imagine the other people who had been here. Thank-you about the techniques. There were a lot of explorations I took liberty in playing with in this one.

  8. This is so idyllic ! So bright and peaceful !

  9. Leslie. This is a wonderful scene. I like the colors of the tree trunks. And the view from ‘behind’–as if we’re walking up to the unaware fisherman. Peaceful painting.

    • With all the talk of birds, trees and all of nature watching us, perhaps the viewer is one of them? Thanks, Eva!

    • I think your comment was really interesting, Eva. I rarely think of who the viewer is, but am keenly aware that whoever views my work may think on this from their own experiences. On a rare occasion an artist can sometimes pick up others’ comments about their work like at an opening to a show where many artists are featured. You mingle long enough and you can hear some of these “other” perceptions. It is often mind-opening all the visions that you didn’t even know existed in your work. I like that about art.

  10. This is marvelous I love the dog and the fish bucket. The surrounding is also lovely you capture it in all its glory.

    • Hi Alonso! I’d forgotten that there are a few paintings that I have done where I have made up a few things in them. You do it so well. Your comment on this post, in particular, is praise, indeed. Thank-you!

  11. you picked it up after all that time and pushed it forward.
    i do like it when that happens.
    Good painting

    • A few times I have pushed something on the back burner, Richard, only to pull it out later with an idea. I like when that happens, too! Thank-you!

  12. Hi Leslie – nice work – you should definitely do more en-plein work and more figures like these in your paintings

    • …and I made these up, Stephen. People like to come and go. I have begun to sketch them in a “little” sketch book for reference poses for later. Don Andrews suggested doing that. It can even be your family members at home that you sketch quickly. Then you always have them to use later when you need them. Thank-you, Stephen. I have been enjoying your travel paintings!

  13. Amazing work, as usual Leslie.
    I like the color and your tree trunks are soooooo beautiful 🙂
    Marinela x

    • Thank-you, for this comment, Marinela. 🙂 By the way, that last poem was great!

  14. Wow! I must have missed this one somehow – fantastic painting Leslie! love the colours on the tree trunks – really inspired by nature! the foliage is beautiful too! A wonderful composition!
    Have you any more of these that you’d forgotten about? 😀

    • I guess I do have more. I completely forgot about them. Had stored them in a tub at the back of a closet and not slid them into my portfolio. Have since remedied that. Thank-you 🙂 for this comment, Lynda, about the color of the tree trunks. What if we woke up one morning and, just for a day, nature reflected the joy some of us feel when out in it? Wouldn’t that be great?

  15. This is beautiful Leslie, as is the story that goes along with it. I’ve been reading a lot of blogs today and there seems to be a reminiscing theme going on. I wonder why that is? Strange.

    • Thank-you, Heather! Maybe the reminiscing comes from the season changing to fall for many of us. I know I begin to spend more time indoors and that seems to start a settling in feeling in me. Don’t know.

  16. Very nice Leslie. Beautiful colours flowing through this scene. I love the trunk work on your trees. They all sing from a style all of your own.

  17. I would recognize your leaves anywhere!

    I love the doggie and the white bucket along with the fishing line.

    An idyllic painting and I can imagine Ryan sitting on the grass waiting for a bite.

    • Thanks, Carol. I even painted this before I knew you and Kaiya. My daughter had a lovely yellow dogat the time. They make such good subjects. Yes. I think I will forever be doing dot foliage. That is going to be a hard one to change, for me I think.

  18. Nice painting Leslie, i thought it’s Ryan sitting there. Your use of colors and your style is very distinct, like Carol mention i could recognized it from anywhere. Thanks for sharing.

    • Thank-you, Francis. There have been many times I have wondered if my work could be recognised as mine. You and Carol have helped me with your re-inforcing those things you identify as something I do.

  19. Like the perspective, the distance between viewer and boy. The color on the trees is stunning. Wonderful painting, Leslie 🙂

    • I was sitting up the slope from this spot and about level with the lower branches of those foreground trees. It was truly a painter’s paradise that day. Since we left early, I had to remember what I felt as I sat there and and drew the scene. These colors may reflect the joy of this special scene in the woods. Thanks, Adam! 🙂

  20. The angle you chose to create this composition is unique and catchy! The orange and blue hues have resulted in a magical drama on the trees, Leslie, this is so beautiful!

    • It was a fairly steep bank along the creek and I sat above the spot featured. I never noticed that about the oranges and blues, Padmaja, so thank-you for pointing that out. Unconsciously, I must have set them in a place of warmth. Thank-you for your continued visits and comments.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: