Monday, September 13, 2010

Rancho San Carlos de Jonata

"Oaks At Rancho San Carlos de Jonata"
15" X 30" Oil on Canvas


I was very fortunate to be invited to visit and take reference photos of this Ranch. This is one of the "Old California" Ranchos handed to prominate Mexican Citizens and this rancho was given from Governer Pio Pico to Joaquin Carrillo and his brother in law Jose Maria Covarrubias. Early Ranchos were used to settle California and raising cattle was the main business at many of the Ranchos. In the 1840's there were so many cattle that travellers were allowed to slaughter a cow for a meal. The cattles hides and tallow were probably more important than the meat of the cow at the time...in fact hides were considered "California bank notes" and used as currency until the gold rush came along.
Over time the original Rancho was sold off, split up and the land handed down to new heirs. Part of it, about 9000 acres, became the town of Solvang. There were 3 founding members of the Danish American Colony Company who founded Solvang and one of them is the relative of the man who now owns a large piece of the original Rancho de Jonata. He and his wife are really great people and love to paint too.



I tried to capture this view looking east across the Santa Ynez valley to show the vastness of the land and rolling hills of the valley. It's a midday scene and has that sun drenched feel to it. Below is a shot of the painting progressing. I have laid in my darks for the trees in the foreground and was at this point putting in the mid greens in this area.


3 comments:

Mick Carney said...

The richness of your darks is adding great impact to your latest pieces. Lovely.

Marian Fortunati said...

Ron --- You have such a gift for painting scenes that seem to go on forever. The owners of the rancho knew what they were doing when they invited you in to paint it... Just beautiful!

Ron Guthrie said...

Hi Mick,
I'm really glad to be pushing the darks more and more now. I like the way they balance out the paintings and add that increased contrast and a bit of drama too at times. Thanks buddy!

Hi Marian,
Thank you too! I wonder if I still lived in Pasadena with the limited view would I paint distance as much, hahaha. Out here you can look across the valley pretty much all of the time...not many houses, buildings or smog to block the view. I'm not complaining about Pasadena either...it's still my hometown. Thanks Marian!!