Sunday, September 26, 2010

Watermelon Painting on the Easel

Today's Quote:
Use wisely what you have been given and you will be given more.  MATTHEW 25:29

detail of Watermelon Work-in-Progress • oil on 10x10 inch cradled wood panel
palette knife painting
copyright Vernita Bridges Hoyt 2010
ART. My current work on the easel is a painting of watermelon slices. Last summer I sliced a watermelon and put three slices on a plate for eating. The colorful melons looked like a picture waiting to be painted. Not wanting to paint in my kitchen, I captured several images on my digital camera. However, the watermelon looked so good my mouth was watering for a bite. That is why you will see a chunk gone out of the third slice. The image above is an enlarged crop out of the painting so you can see enlarged detail. This painting will be finished in a day or two. Some of the wet paint needs to dry a bit before I make mud of it. I am loving these bright colors.

LIFE. I have never tasted watermelon so good as that grown in the sandy lands around the small Texas town known as Grapeland. When I was a kid there were lots of independent farmers in the community. My dad grew peanuts, corn, peas and watermelons for market. My brothers and I would sneak out to the watermelon patch, find a ripe one, pick it up and drop it on the ground until it would burst open. Then as watermelon juice ran out on the sand beneath, we would scoop into the meat of the melons with our hands and taste that sweet juicy fruit. Mmmmm ... good! Dad's crop of melons for shipping out to the market would be missing those we ate in the field and the ones Mom claimed for the family. Years after I left home, Dad retired from the farming aspect of life in the country, so there went the watermelon crop.

One farmer in the Grapeland community, Mr. Wade Pennington and his family, continued to grow watermelons and ship them to other parts of the nation. The Pennington watermelons have become a well-respected national product, and the grandchildren still sell watermelons locally at a roadside stand in downtown Grapeland. That is where I get my juicy, sweet, vine ripened watermelons today. Watermelons will be available in Grapeland on June 1, 2011.

Mr. Wade passed on to Glory last March, but his watermelon legacy lives on. Last week Mr. Wade Pennington was posthumously inducted into the Heritage Hall of Honor at the Texas State Fair. The award was accepted by his son Troy representing Mrs. Pennington and the family.

Check out my facebook store.  SALE ends September 30. Browse through more than 30 original paintings listed at my art shop on facebook! 


  1. I have seen trucks from Texas come into Iowa and unload their watermelon when I was young. Now they go to a central staging area and they ship them a few at a time to each grocery store. They put up a sign saying Texas watermelons. That painting is looking very good already.

  2. Thank you, L.D. I appreciate your comments. Good to see you stopping by the blog. I have really enjoyed following your blog photos of your Iowa flower garden.

  3. Wow! Vernita, this is a great painting. It took me right back to my childhood days when my Dad would take us in an old truck to the watermelon stands in Nada, Tx. Great times. I enjoy your blog very much and always look forward to see your paintings. So inspirational.


  4. This painting makes my mouth water! You can almost taste the juicy sweetness. Good job!

  5. Jimmie, thank you. I'm pleased this painting could take you back to childhood memories. Unfamiliar with Nada, Texas, I went to my Google map to find it. I found it bout halfway between Columbus and Eagle Lake. Nada looks even smaller than Grapeland. Growing up in a small town was a great life, I thought. Glad you like this painting!

  6. Good morning, Leada! Thanks for leaving the nice comment. So the painting makes you want to eat watermelon? Me, too!

  7. Great story Nita... and beautiful watermelon WIP! Now THAT'S good stuff! LOL

  8. Hi Jean ... Thanks! I like writing almost as much as I like painting, but maybe that's a given since I blog. :) I've been working on the watermelon painting off and on today hoping to finish it tonight.


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