Plein air study from the banks of South St. Vrain Creek, near Lyons. Whenever the weather is this unseasonally nice for so long, I always get this sneaking feeling like we're going to pay for it later - it's best to enjoy it while it's here I guess.
This is from a hike to Loch Vale in Rocky Mountain National Park. It was still early morning when I arrived at the lake and it was still and smooth as glass - truly a priceless moment. About half-way through this little painting, the wind picked up, but by then I had enough of the water area done to capture the moment. After that, I hiked on to Sky Pond, and it was anything but calm up there.
The weather has been perfect for painting and shooting pictures in the high country for the past week... and I can't remember a better year for viewing the changing aspen... gotta enjoy it while we can. This is from a bridge over the North St. Vrain Creek on the east edge of Wild Basin.
I spent yesterday afternoon up on the Peak to Peak Highway and ended up a Lily Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park just in time for this glorious back-lit effect on the west end of the lake - I just love September!
I've painted at this location near Berthoud several times over the years. I did this one when storm clouds were gathering, and it got a little dark. When I got it home, I wasn't too thrilled with it, so I re-worked a little in the studio. So it goes when you paint outside...
Changing light and weather conditions can make plein air painting challenging, to say the least. I started this one down by the creek near my house last night just as the sun set. I managed to get the basic composition down as fast as I could, but mixing colors in the dwindling light proved to be a lesson in futility - this came as no surprise because I do this all the time. I looked at it this morning and wasn't totally repulsed by what I had achieved, so I adjusted the color a little and added a few highlights and called it good.
I made it up to Rocky Mountain National Park to paint at dawn the other morning. This is the first of two paintings I did - it's from the trail that goes along Lily Lake. I took a few liberties with the color of the aspens - they aren't really changing just yet.
Here's another little aspen study for some larger aspen paintings I'm working on. As a painter I look up to told me - these are great "push-ups and sit-ups" for larger, more detailed works. In that capacity, they're great - but I also think they stand well on their own - often capturing a fresher, more vibrant glimpse of the subject matter. Either way - they're fun and a good source of instant gratification for me.