Yucca Study, oil on linen panel, 3×4
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Lazy Day at the Poudre
Not far from the city, along the Cache la Poudre River, there’s a fishing hole that’s popular with anglers seeking trout. Originating in the northern range of Rocky Mountain National Park, the ice cold water quenches the thirst of the residents along its path before joining the South Platte and traveling to the Gulf of Mexico. The water gurgled past, the trees were just beginning to turn, and I wished I’d worn my bathing suit for a quick dip in the river.
en plein air
How many times have I pulled on my backpack and headed for a nearby park to hike, think, look and ponder? Whether I have a lot on my mind, or I just feel the need to get out into nature, Bobcat Ridge Open Space is a ‘go-to’ spot. There, I am free to wander, wonder and ease back into myself.
As I painted this cottonwood against the backdrop of the hogback, I thought of napping under the tree or having a picnic lunch. I reflected on the number of hikes I have taken through this park, and how it has become an oasis for my spirit, as well as an opportunity to connect with nature and myself.
oil on panel, 12×16
en plein air
You Sing to My Spirit
Just as the sky began to lighten, I wound my way up the Thompson Canyon, and bounced over the well worn highway to the Wild Basin turnoff in Rocky Mountain National Park. Meeting other painters, we started up the trail with our 30 pound packs. About a mile in, the trail became steep and covered in snow. We carried on, and the reward was well worth the effort when we reached the tumbling Cascade Waterfalls.
Rocks pile and tumble against the alpine blue sky of Wyoming. From a distance, the rocks appear to be building blocks for a giant toddler. Here they sit, forgotten in the eons of time. Contrasted to the hard, sharp rock, aspens dance in the breeze, their golden fall colors warm and bright.
en plein air
Each fall the trees beckon. “Come and paint me”, they call. “Look at how beautiful I am. Do you see how inviting it is in the cool shade of my canopy?” Inspired by a plein air painting session at Bobcat Ridge Natural Area just outside Fort Collins.
8×10, oil on panel
Where the Wild Things Grow
During a trip up the Cache la Poudre Canyon, I came across this field filled with aspen trees. Although I wasn’t able to paint it that day, I knew a return trip was in order and soon the opportunity arrived.
Upon my return, the small aspen grove had filled wildflowers. As I set up my easel and began to paint, I felt as if anything could stumble up out of the river or through the grove of trees. While it would most likely be a deer, I couldn’t help but think of the children’s book, “Where the Wild Things Are” and my imagination went wild.
oil on canvas panel, 5×7