Outside Painting this summer!

Grand Mesa Visitor Center

“Grand Mesa Visitor Center”, Oil, 9″ x 12″

I’ve been doing a lot of plein air painting¬† this summer.¬† Despite the rain and mosquitoes in my surrounding areas, I have gotten out a lot. I also took a couple great workshops this summer.

Here is our instructor, Dave Santillanes, helping a student. We took an exciting drive up Mt. Evans and painted for a good part of the day. Later, back at the Evergreen Fine Arts Gallery, we had critiques and a demo by Dave. I recommend his workshops as he was super helpful, instructive and also a real down to earth kinda guy.

Dave Santillanes & Student

Dave teaching us up on Mt. Evans

Yellow Rock

“Yellow Rock”, Oil, 11″ x 14″

I did this one in Dave’s workshop. We were standing on the edge of a cliff about 1000+ feet high. Dave commented “Wow Cedar, that is a really yellow rock” I mentioned he told us not to use white. He started laughing and said he never told us that. All around from the woods lots of voices piped up saying “yes you did!” Well, he did say that if we used white, to warm it up with yellow. I guess I wasn’t paying that close attention but I did get a yellow rock painting and its not half bad.

So now its fall and the Super Blood Lunar Eclipse Moon. Stay tuned for more paintings as I am about to go into a retreat and paint, paint, paint!

 

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Draft Horses and painting them

Kit and Kat

Kit and Kat, Oil, 14″ x 18″

Yesterday I completed the oil painting called “Kit and Kat”. These gals are Belgium Draft Horses. They were our models during a workshop given by Lindsey Bittner Graham through the Evergreen Fine Arts Gallery, Colorado. They were just down the highway from the gallery. We spent a day painting and photographing them and their handler, Collin. All the excitement of a bunch of camera clicking artists threw the team into a bit of a frenzy but Collin settled them down right away with kind words and re-direction. When they were being driven in front of their cart, they were full of energy and really focused on their task of working for this fellow. When he stopped them, it took them a minute to figure out their job was to just stand there and look pretty. Then they applied their work ethic to standing.

As an artist I found I was relating to them totally as to being focused on what my job is. At first, just like the team, I was some what distracted from what I was there to do. I was happy to pet and kiss their big (really big) noses and they were happy to get the attention. I took some photos and set up my plein air gear and started to focus on the task at hand. I got a great color/value study that morning with the guidance of Lindsey plus another one of them without their traces in the afternoon. The critique at the end of the day was great, too. I related that to the horses being un-tacked and groomed before being turned out into their pasture.

This painting is a studio piece of the work I did that day last month. I am happy with the way it feels. Kit and Kat are great teachers, too.

My neighborhood

Study for Cow Hay 2

Study for Cow Hay 2, oil, 8″ x 10″

Recently I’ve been going out in my neighborhood and plein air painting. I love my neighbor’s hay fields. A special favorite of mine is his old moldy hay that no one wants to feed to their animals. Its very picturesque.

The other morning I went out early to paint. It was the start of a very hot day and with the irrigation water coming into the field, the humidity and bug population started to rise. Up went my umbrella and on went the bug stuff (I use skin so soft) and I was absorbed by the light and subject matter until I realized I had lost the light and it was time to head back home for lunch.