Grant Woods Trail

Grant Woods Trail

I had a lot of fun with color in this one.  The title, not so much.  Any suggestions?

When Grant Woods was first dedicated as a forest preserve, It was fairly choked with brush and lower quality trees.  Oaks could not regenerate in all that mess, let alone all the wonderful savanna plants we keep finding.  This past year in particular has been quite a year of clearing, with huge swaths being opened up, as you see here.  Now with light streaming in, asters and goldenrod can light up the field where just last year it was nothing but a grey tangle of branches.

28 Comments

  1. I’d call it “Rising Wind.” Why? The color extending out to the right from the brightest leaves in the center of the painting look to me like wind-blown leaves: the first to begin leaving the tree. The color also defines the tops of the trees in the distance, but I can’t keep from seeing that stream of ‘leaving leaves.’

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  2. Terrific! I love the way the sky and tree line in the background look. And great news about the preserve regenerating. I’ve been pretty much city-bound this year, so this scene looks particularly inviting.

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    1. Thank you Robert! I think if I lived in the city I’d be frantic to get out among the trees~I’m glad this painting helps you do that.
      It has been exciting to see the efforts to restore the preserves ramp up in the past couple of years. For many years the emphasis was on acquisition. Now that a green corridor has been secured, running through the length of the county, they have turned their money and effort to restoration.

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    1. I’m so glad you like it. You’re right, it is a wonderful place to hike….as long as you’re armed! This past summer a woman was out walking with her little boy and another woman, a stranger, jumped out and stabbed her multiple times!! They did catch her and the wounded woman survived. I carry a weapon, now.

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      1. Attacks are rare, thank goodness, although that was a particularly scary one. Several years ago a man who turned out to be a known sex offender tried to jump me but I scared him off. I still go out in the field, but I’m very alert!

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    1. Thank you. My reference photo pre-dates the work that is being done, so I had the enormous pleasure of removing a swath of brush with my paintbrush. Most satisfying. Wish it were that easy in the field. Many of the things that were cut down, like buckthorn, will come right back again unless the area is faithfully burned and reseeded with native forbs.

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  3. Just around the bend? Though I must say “Rising Wind” especially with its explanation is far more original and subtle. Love hearing more about the restoration happening. Sounds like a very worthy project.

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  4. This is great to hear that such a place is being renewed and maintained. There cannot be enough natural places for people to recharge their energies or settle down their anxieties. And you’ve depicted it so lovingly with so many seasonal colors.
    I don’t always read all the comments in a post but did this time to see what suggestions were made. I like both Linda’s and Gunta’s suggestions. But there’s nothing wrong with yours since you were celebrating the place.
    It should be gracing a wall and possibly one of the folks involved in this project might think so too..

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