|5 x 7 sketch pastel on tan paper|
Because of all the rain, snow, sleet, and cool weather we had in May, the scenery was very green for a desert. I even saw Indian Paintbrush wildflowers and patches of purple flowering ground covering plants. The grasses in some of the valleys brought out bands of wild horses we could see from our car - even little foals at the mares' sides. I also saw wild antelope with their calves and one had twin calves at her side.
Although this picture doesn't show it, many of the higher range peaks still had a frosting of snow on top. One thing that is hard to paint well is the juniper trees that cover the hills and slopes. Many are the size of large bushes, but some get as large as an oak tree. Because the rainfall is limited, they are naturally spaced apart so as to not compete. Thus, the hills are "dotted" with trees. That is hard to paint well.
While we were driving, all I could do is a 3 x 5 sketch with a pencil. Then when we got to our destination I did this little pastel sketch from my drawing, using my memory to paint the color scheme.