Stormy Inspiration

"Storm Headed East" 9 x 12 Chalk Pastel on Paper
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This one wasn't technically plein air, although I did paint it in action! It was a stormy day, so I worked in front of the kitchen window as the clouds barrelled eastward. This painting was unique in that I was able to begin and finish it in one session while my daughter was awake-- never been able to pull that off before!

Whenever we get a good rain in Fallbrook, the colors of the surrounding hills become richer: purples get darker, greens are more vivid, and bits of sanguine red peek through the bushes and trees. Set against the backdrop of a gunmetal sky, the colors become even more striking. I always stop to appreciate the view of a rainy day (once the fog clears), and this was the first time I tried to capture its beauty on paper.

The day before, it was quite windy, so I did my plein air work close to the ground:

"Plein Air Shrooms" 9 x 12 Chalk Pastel on Paper
Original Sold

Mushrooms! Or more likely toadstools...

These little guys are growing over by our shed, and they gave me a good excuse to find a sunny spot with less wind to do my painting for the day. I kept them fairly abstract, figuring that I didn't want to end up stylizing them. I do admit to having the "A,E,I,O,U" song from the Disney version of Alice in Wonderland in my head as I worked. It's hard not to think of pop culture when looking at a few mushrooms for an hour straight.

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