"Oscar's House" morning plein air

The weather has warmed up this week, but the strange wind gusts prevail. I sat pondering this over morning coffee, trying to decide where I might go to paint outside without being completely blown away. I had only packed my smaller lightweight pochade box, which as I've described previously in excruciating detail, is not great for wind. But the other alternative was to drive across town to my studio to get my larger, sturdier easel. As I turned these matters over in my head, I stared out the kitchen window, and this scene came into view:

Forsythia spring plein air painting by Jennifer Young "Oscar's House" Oil on Canvas 10"x8"

I started noticing how the forsythia bush in our yard (foreground lower left) framed and echoed the bushes in bloom across the street at my neighbor's house. I also noticed how the bare-limbed trees above created a kind of upper frame for the little bungalow, and I thought the composition could be worth exploring.  Also, since I could set up on my back porch, I'd be sheltered from the wind by our house.  Whether this solution was realized out of laziness or resourcefulness is a matter of opinion, but never-the-less, "Oscar's House" was born!

Oscar is actually my neighbor's dog. I am embarrassed to say that I can never remember my neighbor's name. Okay, it's no secret to those who know me that I'm not great with remembering peoples' names. But this particular memory lapse isn't totally my fault.

When Oscar and his mom moved into their house, my husband and I introduced ourselves and received a reply of "This is Oscar," referencing the little wiener dog at our new neighbor's feet. There was no mention of our neighbor's name, so the conversation developed in such a way that we received various information and opinions of Oscar's via our neighbor's translations. (Oscar likes this, Oscar prefers that. Oscar is barking because he isn't used to strange men, etc.)

In subsequent meetings we actually did find out our neighbor's name, but you'll have to ask my husband. For some reason my mind wipes clean any recollection of her name and instantly replaces it with "Oscar's mom". So, this is Oscar's house. I think I'm going to be kind to myself today and call it a resourceful solution to a rather  gusty March morning.

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