Six Palms, egg tempera painting 1999

Six Palms, egg tempera painting 1998, Daniel Ambrose

The old creek meanders through marsh and myrtle and mysterious indigo shadows of mossy live oaks and cedars. Lanky palms lean from her sinuous shoulders. Egrets, ibis, spoonbills, and wood storks parade her shallows probing and pecking for crabs and fingerlings. An eagle swoops in and snatches a mullet in sharp talons glistening silver in the sunlight. Water dripping from her breast like jeweled pendants. An otter arcs across a narrow channel in the shadows of black needlerush, a salt loving grass transforming into purple haze in winter sunsets. Centuries ago, the splashing paddles of British and Spanish soldiers, the voices of Seminoles and the extinct Timucuan, once echoed over her ultramarine face. Winding through time she’s carried cargo and conversations to coquina plantation and sugar mill. Here in this place of my childhood, harmonious memories of family and friends linger in the bubbling eddies of tidal flows.

The egg tempera painting above, Six Palms, from about 17 years ago represents the colors of my old way, when the light of many loved ones voices sparkled in the air above Bulow’s waters. Voices silenced by the passage of time. For the past seven years I’ve wandered new places for inspiration, but I’ve been seeking a spiritual source close to home once again.

If you come for a visit, I’ll take you to Bulow, to one of my childhood places. But we won’t stay long. The gentle breezes, rustling palms and waving grasses nourished my spirit and inspired my art for decades. But come, now I will take you to a more beautiful place.

Seeking a liberating feeling of freedom, of promise and possibilities,  I imagined other childhood places—remembered one thirty miles up the coast. I’ve been there recently, making studies, reflecting, and painting in awe of the luminous light and uplifting colors. The well is beginning to fill again. New ideas are emerging. Hope is rising in a revelation series about dreams, sea and sky, inspired living, real and imaginary childhood places.

Here is a peek at the initial phase of my discovery process. The plein air oil painting below is one of my recent studies.


Plein air color study by Daniel Ambrose

In the spirit of my art crusade, I’m organizing egg tempera landscape painting workshops. I will take you through my method of creating from initial inspiration to painting an egg tempera landscape.  To be notified of when and where the workshops will be held, or to host one in your area, join my painting the egg tempera landscape list.

We’ll explore light, color and inspiring places guaranteed to make your heart sing and take your work to the next level.

If you come for a visit, I’ll take you there.

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