Dave Croad – "Approaching Storm"

by Cindy Paul

A native to South Africa, Dave Croad is a professional artist who graduated from watercolor to oil. "Approaching Storm" is a dramatic depiction in oil of a single white home, set out in the countryside among pleasant rolling hills and seemingly endless space. A herd of cattle huddle together in the mid-ground, while the foreground consists of the long, bold lines used by the artist to represent a landscape in the eerie lighting of an impending storm.

The appealing farmhouse is of the whitest whites, with tall green trees framing its back and sides. A red roof serves to further accentuate the whiteness of the walls and the deep contrast of the small black rectangles that are the windows. Behind it, and behind the hills that provide, one might hope, some form of shelter, the blue sky is being swiftly overtaken by a single, enormous cloud.

The effect of the painting is immediate. One understands that this is what it’s like living in the country, and we accept it, even as we wait, a bit anxiously, for the storm to arrive.

"Road to Nowhere" is another oil by this artist that is not to be missed. It displays the incredible power and beauty of a South African countryside with effortless rhythm and power.

Landscapes and traditional seascapes are Croad’s usual subjects, and he imbues each of his paintings with his own, easy-going yet nicely controlled style. "A Quiet Anchorage" is a great representation of the landscapes Croad creates, at once serene and blissful, but never without movement and vitality.