Signed lower right: George Thomas
Oil on Linen, 80 x 50cm / 23.6" x 16", Framed
Interior of Amazonia
Forget en plein air, this was en humid, sweaty air, with ants running up and down my easel and the interminable buzz and screech of mosquitoes, thirsty for artists’ blood.
My guide, a local tribesman, taught me a little trick to keep the mosquitoes at bay; if you rub your hands on one of the many ants’ nests attached to the forest tree trunks, the nest releases a pungent, sweet perfume which when rubbed on your neck and face keeps the mosquitoes away. It apparently keeps jaguars away too. I did not hold back in applying the scent!
The painting took five days to finish as the humidity made the painting tiring. However, in equal measure, the sounds of the jungle were an assault on the senses. Be it monkeys and squawking parrots rustling in the canopy above or frogs on the forest floor, all to the deafening background noise of the whooshing rapids.
A curious monkey joined me on the same branch each morning, so it seemed only proper to give him his own cameo role in the painting.