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Artist's Notebook -- Huntington Gardens

September 26, 2009 | 12:00 am


The Huntington Gardens by Marion Eisenmann


The Huntington Gardens by Marion Eisenmann


The Huntington Gardens by Marion Eisenmann

Marion Eisenmann and I were going over some of her recent work and this caught my eye: A page of value studies she did earlier this month at the Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens to prepare for classes she is giving. These are three of the six studies that were on one page.

I always enjoy the time I spend roaming the grounds at the Huntington. My favorite place to watch people is on one of the benches beneath the wisteria on the hill overlooking the Japanese gardens. There are several koi ponds there and I think I have heard people say "Look at those huge fish!" in every language known to mankind.

Marion says: I did these value studies instead of preliminary pencil sketches to capture the light of the multiple layers of plants before working in color. I used a brush versus a pencil in order to not get so much into the detail of the scenario in front of me, but focus more on the light situation, contrast and composition. I like the silhouetted and layered feel of these studies, they remind me of little miniature theater stages.

Note: In case you just tuned in, Marion and I are visiting local landmarks in a project inspired by what Charles Owens and Joe Seewerker did in Nuestro Pueblo. Check back next week for another page from Marion's notebook.

By the way, Daily Mirror readers have asked about buying copies of Marion's artwork. Naturally, this is gratifying because I think Marion's work is terrific, and one of my great pleasures is sharing it with readers every week. We have decided that the project is a journey about discovering Los Angeles rather than creating things to sell. Marion is busy with other projects and says she isn't set up to mass-produce prints but would entertain inquiries about specific pieces. For further information, contact Marion directly.