Three Painters Interpret A View of Valdez NM

Valdez New Mexico by Karen Gillis Taylor. Click for larger view.

This painting was created with brush and palette knife from an annual journey to my beloved New Mexico. The view of the small mountain town of Valdez, north of Taos must be popular with painters. I discovered it when I pulled off the side of the dirt road, exploring the countryside around Arroyo Seco, where I was staying. James Michener and Louis L’Amour wrote about the “Blue Mountains”, in the Rocky Mountain chain which ends south of Colorado, at the Sangre de Cristo Mountains (Blood of Christ, in Spanish). Yes, they really are blue, at certain times of day. In my last post “Back to Painting” you see a reddish color I used to prime the canvas. I did the same here in the beginning. The end result gives allows reddish highlights showing through. It’s perfect when the natural landscape contains red rocks and yet gives an accent in unexpected places like the sky.

“Valdez from the Rim”, oil, 24 x 30” by Alyce Frank

I adore Alyce Frank’s paintings. Here she used the red-toned base painting technique that also serves to unify the painting palette. Hints of snow indicate a different season, but you can most certainly see we painters may have stood in nearly the same spot!

“Valdez Morning”, Helga Haller

Helga Haller is another artist whose work I’ve encountered on trips to Taos. I love the way she has interpreted the steepness of the far mountains to create a more dramatic backdrop, as does her sense of deep values surrounding the valley.

This is just a taste of how 3 painters were inspired by “The Land of Enchantment”, otherwise known as New Mexico. It’s one of those places which draw artists in droves, always with good reason. They say the light is different there, and I will vouch for that. If you are on a road trip south out of Colorado, you begin to see the change about Walsenburg and then it magnifies as you go further toward Taos. If you go, all of the seasons are great, but my first trip years ago was in September, and I was captured. A month later I was living there.

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3 Responses to “Three Painters Interpret A View of Valdez NM”

  1. bobgillis Says:

    Thanks for sharing your insights, Karen. You make me want to go to New Mexico and see for myself!


  2. LM Art Says:

    Karen, now I can’t wait to be in ABQ! Thanks for the great commercial for NM and the beautiful painting!


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