The original photo is a black and white print of an old corncrib that once stood west of DeKalb, Illinois on Route 38. I had to walk a long way out into the field to get this shot. The original print was a good composition but the building was almost black against the sky. Twenty-five years later it has become a breakout painting for me, having never before produced anything like it. A trip to the Chicago Art Institute and studying Monet’s Haystacks definitely influenced my thought process. This is one of my first atmospheric pieces. The sunset is made up of seven separate washes. I came across this technique while working on White Barn. I let each individual color wash dry before applying the next. Working without fear of failure is key to producing something “new” with watercolors.
A Limited Edition print of Corn Crib is now part of Chicago’s Robert Morris University’s permanent collection.