October 26, 2014

WEstcliffe views- continued

After our morning of music with the Governor we broke for a quick lunch. Those who wished could gather at the Third Street Gallery. Curt Gillespie would lead us caravan style out to the Grape creek area on the east side of town toward the Wet Mountains. WE met around 1:00. The site to which we were going was on private propery. Let me say the SAG, Sangres Art Guild, gave us a map when we arrived with sites designated and named where local people would allow us to paint on their property.

The creek area had  a variety of scenery to choose from. It had streams, trees, shade, rocks, vistas with mountains and blue skies. So we wandered around searching out good spots. I found a place on a rock put up my easel, chair, and pastel boxes. I have a Heileman box as my main box, filled with mainly Terry Ludwigs, Schminke's and Senneliers  (all the wonderfully soft pastels). I also have boxes of nupastels and my prize Roches all divided into various value and hue groupings. Had to struggle to get my umbrella slanted just so to provide the shade I wanted. I wanted both my pastel surface -Wallis board. and my pastel box to be shaded. Finally, this did not go smoothly and took some time.

I began blocking in with nupastels, using primarily the complements of the hues which I saw. If I saw green I would use a variation of red. I blocked in 3 values primarily the deepest value, medium value and the lightest. Just as I was getting into the rhythm a gust of wind came up and turned my large box of pastels upside down on the ground. I now had many broken pieces of pastel with which to work and had to quickly reorganize my box and get myself set up. A plein air painter races the changing light and must just go with whatever the environment throws at them. I raced time and finally resolved some issues and finished. I had perhaps 2 hours of painting this view with my wrestling with my equipment.

Thus ended Friday. We were to select 3 of our  best pieces, frame them and bring them to the Third Street Gallery Saturday morning to be judged by Mark Daily. Saturday late afternoon awards were to be announced.
We finished our day as we began it- being serenaded by our singing cowboy as we ate dinner.

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