Today I went off with the Colorado Pastel Society to paint plein aire. We went to the Spruce Mountain Open Space which is south of Denver proper. I live in a western city on the edge of the mountains. The earth has imperceptibly moved up from the Mississippi River basin for hundreds of miles. St Louis Missouri is an elevation of 456 feet and then Kansas City is at 865 by the time you travel the 3 hours on I -70, past Abilene, Ks (1,155 ) you reach Denver the Mile HIgh City at 5280 ft( 6.5 hours from Abilene). Here we are in vast sweeping space in crisp light with skies similar to the width of what a sailor views but without any halo of humidity). So today we were at approximately 7,1227 ft. on a vast open high plain.
This is what I carried to the shade of a grove of oak scrub. I tucked myself back in among the branches knowing that the sun would be moving across the sky and finding every unshaded spot.
By 11:30 the sun flattened out the shadows of the land and grasses. I was back in the center of Denver by 12:30. I understand that just further around the trail one comes upon red rocks and wildflowers. Hopefully later this week I will head back there again looking for more wild flowers. It was invigorating to work in such wide open spaces. Lovely to be out of the studio, although I have a piece(in my studio that I am engaged in). Next Saturday the Golden Triangle Plein Aire Paint Out begins and this is a fine way to re-immerse myself in plein aire.