Dimiao nature inspires visual on-the-spot painting 

  • April 16, 2017
  • Rey Anthony H. Chiu

TAGBILARAN CITY, April 12 (PIA)—Toting primed canvas, oil paint tubes in satchels, folding easels, carving tool kits, newly-charged batteries and a choice of lenses, Bohol visual artists made Dam-agan Falls in Dimiao Bohol as their inspirational subject for the Sunday Open Air painting session on April 2. 

The falls, or more appropriately a cascade lazily bursting out into an aquamarine pool, is hidden in a pocket of forest in Barangay Catugasan. It also provides a space for swimming, before it continues its cascade to rock strewn spring bed before joining the sea vial barangay Balbalan.

The second of a series of outdoor painting sessions by a small group of visual artists in the oil and acrylic media, the plein air session is a recreation of the 19th century French impressionism which draws its inspiration from the open air, explained oil painter Rhants Anunciado. 

The first plein air session happened in the down rivers of Lagtangan in Sevilla. 

Last Sunday, artists including St. Joseph Cathedral ceiling fresco restorer Joey Labrador, artists Glen Lumantao, Anunciado, Victor Bulala, Vincent Omar Dagdayan, Elvin Perocho Vitor, Emerald Marie Salipong, driftwood sculptor Gab Café and retablo restorer Jun Lagura ventured the arduous trek to the session location some 600 meters from the barangay road. 

The trek along a canal that supplied irrigation water to the blooming nearby rice fields prepared no one to the sight that revealed itself following a treacherous descent via carved steps to the cascade’s collecting pool. 

Screened by a thick forest and dense vegetation, the beauty of the cataract of bustling fresh water can only be appreciated when one stands before the large pool. The gush of gurgling to the roar of the falls fill the senses, inspiring artists' senses. 

The outdoor painting session is Bohol visual artists’ effort to sustain the local visual arts industry by assuring continued production while announcing and promoting local places in Bohol with tourism potential, added Dimiao tourism Officer Virgilio Namalata. 

Namalata guided the visual artists to Dam-agan Falls and helped contextualize the session’s goals to the participating visual artists. 

Moments later, the artists picked their chosen spots to install their easels and worked on daubing paint in the blank canvas, their subjects: Dam-agan environment.

A place that feature the ideal bright and dark contrasts, the texture of flood mellowed rocks and the chiaroscuro of lights filtering through the leaves of forest canopy and the gnarled roots and vines climbing to the shades were in almost everyone’s canvas.

At the end of the session, the artists took time to pose with their outputs, while talking of initial plans of the next session. (rmn/rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)


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