Thursday, February 23, 2017

Plein Air Adventures,plein air, Oil paintings,fall aspen ,aspen trees

Plein Air Painting Adventures ( or misadventures)  Story follows paintings below. 
Indian Mountain, 9x12 plein air oil painting

View from Cabin Deck, 9x12 plein air oil painting

Near Basalt, 6x8 plein air oil painting

Plein Air Painting Misadventures
(At least one pretty rough start)

Every fall I take about a week and head into the mountains to paint the gorgeous scenery.
My first painting site on this particular adventure was Kenosha Pass. It was a late afternoon weekday.  Slightly rainy, very foggy, and a little on the cool side. There was nobody up at Kenosha and I drove far into the forest. I hopped out of my trusty ol’ 4 door yellow jeep and began taking photographs. It was lovely. A foggy autumn kind of lovely.

 After about 30 minutes it started to rain more heavily and I began to get pretty wet and cold. I headed back to the jeep but keys were gone! And I'd walked all over the place, including off the trail and into some deep grassy areas. I was locked out of the jeep, cold and wet and had no cell phone coverage. I searched for about an hour and was beginning to panic.  I even started to cry.  There wasn't a soul in sight and I hated the idea of hitching a ride on 285! 

 Shortly after sending up a desperate prayer for help and through divine intervention I am sure, I finally found the keys in a grassy area well off the beaten path.  I made it to the cabin in Indian Mountain and made myself a nice, warm cozy fire in the wood stove. I took off my wet wool socks and set them on the wood stove's mantle to dry.

On the second day of my solo plein air painting trip I hopped on my little enduro motorcycle and tooled around Indian Mountain taking photographs with the brand-new expensive Canon camera that my husband had just bought me for my birthday. I returned to the cabin and set the camera on the motorcycle seat and did a quick plein air painting of some fallen trees outside of my cabin. The painting turned out well and I decided to reward that small success with another quick mo-mo ride.

I love to ride my motorcycle on the dirt roads of Indian Mountain in the fall!  The crisp, cool air, shimmering golden -yellow aspen and the wafting scent of scattered campfires is intoxicating.  How in the world I overlooked this next part I've no clue. But I hopped on the motorcycle and started down the worn dirt driveway when suddenly I heard a grinding, gnashing, awful, crunching sound. I'd sat on the strap of the camera, and the camera swung over into the back tire and was being desecrated by the churning spokes.  Bye- bye, nice, new, expensive camera lens. (Thank goodness the body of the camera was intact, although I was sure at the time it, too, was ruined.)

  Feeling beat up and defeated by my own stupidity I took refuge back inside the cabin only to find my wool socks burnt to a crisp on the fire mantel from the previous night. I could've burnt the place down. 

As far as I recall there were no other major gaffes on that particular trip,  but when I have that many misadventures in a row I tend to get fed up and reign it in. I can really focus and concentrate when I need to, although I do tend to reside most often on the comfortable, breezy, artistic right side of my brain, which can get me into big trouble. Ah, the joys and struggles of the artistic life!

Next time:  Looking on the Bright Side of Things
(when tightly wrapped, frozen beef defrosts then explodes inside of your Plein Air Paintmobile (AKA yellow jeep) on a very hot summer day.)