Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Devil's Backbone    8x16    oil/panel

I went up to Loveland today to drop off my painting for the Richard Schimd Auction ( http://www.rcvfd-richard-schmid-art-auction.com/ ) and since I went all the way up there, I decided to stay and paint. This is the Devil's Backbone Open Space just to the west of downtown Loveland. I have not painted there in years. The last time I did it was early spring and it was freezing cold. I always seem to go to this place in the winter, I don't know why. Anyway I was up there, it's late summer, and I've never seen this place when it wasn't winter, so I had to go. It definitely wasn't freezing. Felt like 100 in the sun. There was a nice breeze that would kick up to a light wind every now and then so it made it bearable. This painting took a little longer than I thought it would and I didn't really do what I set out to do. The painting came out pretty good in the end anyway though. Like I said in a previous post, this is the best I have done at this location so far. I may develop this as a larger painting when it gets too cold to go out painting.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

The Rock   8x12   oil on panel

I went down to Castle Rock today to paint something else but when I saw this view of the rock I had to paint it. It was mid-morning and already getting quite hot. Fortunately, there was a nice breeze so  it wasn't too bad under my umbrella. Not much else to say about this one except what you really want isn't always what you are looking for!

Wash Park   8x10   oil on panel

I did this a month ago on a PAAC paint out in Washington Park, which is in Denver. The weather was very nice that day and had a nice time chatting with the other painters. Got a little side-tracked into a discussion about the psychology and philosophy of Art which annoyed a few other painters nearby. It was a great conversation so I don't feel too bad about annoying them!
I was really pretty stumped about what to paint. I'm not much of a flower painter and the gardens were in full bloom which made it a little overwhelming. I also spent a little time chasing a Tiger Swallow Tail Butterfly around, that was about the size of my hand, with the camera. I've seen a lot of them this summer and I think this one was probably the biggest one I've seen. I saw another painter kind of hiding behind some bushes so I went over to investigate. I saw this scene (which isn't the one the other painter was painting) and I thought "There it is!" I had finally found my painting and this one just rolled right onto the panel.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

High Noon 8x10 oil/panel

Went to Castle Rock to meet the PAAC group at Ridgeline Open Space. I got there late and most everyone had left. Talked to one fellow painter, Jennifer, who said it was so hot she thought everyone else left because of the heat. It felt like 100 in the parking lot. When I stepped out of the car I could feel the heat from the pavement right through my shoes.  She also mentioned it was so hot it made her oil paint quite thin and she had trouble pushing paint around.
I hiked up one of the trails and saw this view. It was the first thing I saw that looked interesting and because of the heat, I didn't feel like walking too much further with all my equipment. By the time I set up, did my thumbnail sketch and started working it was noon. And Jennifer was right.. no need to use any medium. The heat made my paint super soft. Fortunately, by the time I was almost done it clouded up and cooled off. When I got back to the car it was raining. By the time I got home it was sunny and hot again. A typical Colorado afternoon! 

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Eldorado Canyon 8x10 oil

My painting from the Tuesday (8-9-11) PAAC paint out. We met at Eldorado Canyon just south of Boulder. There were 7 or 8 people already there, most of whom I didn't know. Chatted with Leslie Allen for a few minutes before heading off to paint. I think most everyone stayed down near the creek so I didn't do that. I have been here before to paint and have painted at this exact spot before. It's been years since I was here though.  I never got a decent painting from this spot so I wanted to try it again. This spot is a little way up the Fowler Trail heading towards the bottom of the canyon. You have a nice view of the canyon on both sides as well as the creek, the Bastille, and the plains beyond. The Bastille is the dark cliff on the right side of my painting. It is a popular spot for climbers, as is the whole canyon. There were at least 6 people on it while I was painting.
The weather was really nice and I was in the shade the whole time so I think I got an OK painting. This location is difficult to paint I think, because there is so much detail crammed into a narrow view. It makes it quite challenging to edit out things without losing the character of the place. If you chop down your field of view to simplify things, you lose so much that you can't really tell where or what you are painting. If you pull back to see everything you get overwhelmed. Plus, at my location, which is above the canyon floor, you can see up and down as well as left and right. Anyway, I think it came out all right. Certainly the best I have done at this location so far.