5/27/14

Getting back on track

Gosh, I've been offline now for nearly 3 months and so much has happened with no time to recover and replenish my energy.  Moving into the plein air season means a lot of painting outdoors when the weather is cooperating, especially in Oregon where rain is the main deterrent.  I took a trip down to California to paint the desert in the Palm Springs area and Monterey CA. with a couple of fun and adventurous painters Michael Orwick and Thomas J. Kitts. We three packed ourselves, our luggage, and painting gear into a Prius with a top box and ventured on to paint. I didn't expect to, but I  truly fell in love with the desert. It was quite a different scene than what I was imagining with coral and sage colors in the early morning to orange and soft blues in the late afternoon light. We discovered the best times were the starts and finishes of each day, making for long working hours. Here are a few paintings from the desert.

"Skirts" 12x9" Pastel 

This piece was painted in Indian Canyon, an area that is sacred to the Native Cahulla tribe. It hosts many types of palm trees that nurse off of the streams that spring from the San Jacinto Mountain range.  The colors of the palm skirts range from orange to grey, purple to pink and almost any color you can see. This was a magical piece to paint.

My setup.

"Desert Breath" 8x6" Pastel

This piece was painted in a 30 minute race to catch the setting sun's last glimmer. It was probably the most exciting and favorite piece to paint in a long time. Unfortunately, this desert floor is slated for a housing development :(

We woke up at 5:30 to catch the sunrise on the San Jacinto Mountain Range.

"Color Cast" 12x9" Pastel

Just after the sunrise, all the colors immediately go flat.

"Evening Wash" 9x12" Pastel

Another one of my favorites, because of the warm and cool colors used to portray the evening's last hint of light, I painted this as the sun was setting behind the San Jacinto Mountains. The light was incredible in the desert and was so happy to experience such a tender display of color. The mountain range took most of my rendering time because of the subtle nuances of light on the range. The foreground wash area just happened to fill in so immediately. Ya gotta love that when that happens.

Then off for a full day of driving to Monterey, Ca for the Plein Air Convention.

The Plein Air Convention & Expo (PACE) provides a great time to reconnect with painting friends from past competitions as well as making new connections along with tons of learning. I love this event and the energy it has. Again, I was asked to go on stage and offer up a pastel demonstration. Although I was fully prepared for the demo, I didn't get "staged" in time and then tripped up on the staircase. My side tray of selected pastels all fell to the floor and made for an Academy appearance. It did rattle me a bit, but I recovered and continued as best as I could.  Here is my demo, titled after the spill.

"Tripping Pond" 12x16" Pastel

Demoing onstage

One of my pieces from the 700 artist paint out painted at Point Lobos State Park

There is still so much more to share about my past adventures, but I'm guessing you have read this far and are ready to tune out. I may be a bit sporatic at best, to post more regularly, but like I said the plein air season has me outdoors chasing the time allotted for me to create. 

Thanks for sticking with me. ~Brenda

7 comments:

Donna T said...

It's great to see your work again, Brenda! Beautiful stuff, as always!

Brenda Boylan said...

Thanks Donna. It's been awhile but always a great way for me to journal my journey. Thanks for stopping by! ~B

Marcy Silveira said...

NICE desert work; does sound demanding to be setup pre-sunrise & end of day….even more mandatory then other in other climates; hard to siesta mid-day. Great to read, look at, thanks.

Marcy Silveira said...

Great to hear & see your desert work; sage & coral mornings, uh-huh….sounds exhausting. Thanks

Brenda Boylan said...

Thanks for stopping by Marcy.
It was so exhilarating once you get out there. I figure I will sleep when I'm dead! Plus we always went out to b-fast once we packed it up and a wonderful dinner with wine after the sun set. Ahh, it was such a great time out there. :)

Debbie said...

Thanks for sharing your adventures Brenda! Beautiful work!

Brenda Boylan said...

Thanks for dropping by Debbie, and thanks for your readership! I'm hoping I can post more regularly, but my schedule is getting busier the more I paint! I guess that's a good thing.
~B