I have a batch of recent plein air paintings that I need to tweak a little and sign. I've been waiting for my foot swelling to go down so I can stand at the easel a little bit. Here is a sneak peak at almost finished paintings I'll be putting up on my website soon.....
This painting was done before the holidays. I remember it was very, very cold and there was a breeze that could be strong at times. The other painters found dunes to stand behind the wind. I stayed right at the back of my truck in the parking lot because the view was actually a nice composition. With the tailgate down I had a convenient place to spread out my tubes of paint and have a thermos of hot drink for everyone to come by for a warm-up.
"Evergreens and Aspens"
This paint-out was obviously in the fall. Our group was supposed to paint at a little-known lake at the top of Mt. Rose, but roadwork in that area prevented it. One of our painters suggested this spot down the road on the Lake Tahoe side where the aspens were colored. We had quite a big group that day, even three painters from Nevada City, CA!
"Fall at Spooner Lake"
There were only two other painters joining me this day at Spooner Lake. It was a beautiful fall day and the sun was still low enough creating shadows.
This was painted after New Years when we were in a real cold snap. We were at Little Washoe Lake and it was entirely frozen over. But there were streaks in the ice that created interesting patterns. One of our painters that day was new - just moved from Maui! What a switch for her!
"Old Sycamore Trees"
We recently visited Southern California (Newport Beach) and I went out to paint in the Nix Nature Area/Sycamore Canyon of the Laguna Canyon area. When visiting this area I always think of how so many famous artists have painted here, and even painted these very trees. The California Impressionists lived in Laguna Beach and painted this entire area. California had a lot of rain recently and even flooding. So the grass this January was much taller and lush for this time of year.
I was surprised to notice that I hadn't painted for an entire month during the holidays. Time can really slip by. Some of my friends had longer artistic dry spells - six months or so. So it was especially sweet that we all got together to paint yesterday - on a glorious and warmer-than-usual winter day in the high desert of Washoe Valley, Nevada.
Painting with friends gives you the support you need to make those first tentative strokes from "rusty-fingers". We gave encouragement to each other as we mentally struggled with being unsure of what we were doing. After an hour we felt more "at home" with our medium and relaxed and enjoyed the fact that we were back in the game.
The fact that it was a gorgeous day certainly helped - even if we bombed we could still enjoy just being out there with friends.
Painting with friends can get you back on a roll and get you revved up to look forward to the next painting at home or the next scheduled paint-out. Painting outside presents challenges that we don't have in a studio painting from a photograph. If you are with friends you can talk about these mysteries and stumbling blocks and get ideas from your friends.
My challenge to myself this day was to paint the patterns in the ice on the small lake. Soon this ice will be melted and I won't see this scene again to paint - so it was fun to try and experiment.
And I admit I probably wouldn't have gone out to paint this day if it weren't for my friends...
Welcome to my art blog! This is where I share my explorations and learning experiences in pastel, watercolor and oil painting. I have had this blog for about six or more years. I am currently entering many national and regional juried art shows. I have a website and sell my work from there as well. I started a group called Reno Tahoe Plein Air Painters a year ago and it has grown to about 40 active painters! Each year brings new challenges and exciting opportunities. I have made many friends among other art bloggers and enjoy visiting their blogs. I hope you enjoy your visit here, and click on the links to my website and the plein air painters to see more!