Adobe early afternoon

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24″x18″ pastel on sanded paper
I did this painting as a demo. I enjoyed painting for a group of friends/ students/ artists, and listening to live music. I started with a complimentary color study of the scene, and ended by being gifted with a snickers ice cream bar. It was a great afternoon!

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Underpainting before denatured alcohol wash

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Underpainting after alcohol wash.
I love the way an underpainting adds complexity to colors in way that is hard to duplicate.

Upper Camp

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It is that time of year where I load my family, our bikes and backpacking gear, and more art supplies than you can imagine and head to New Mexico. I will arrive to the sunshine, and the sunsets, the trails and rattlers. I will arrive to friends old and new, and together we will grow, and learn and experience the magic of the painted desert.

I will arrive to unpack our belongings in our home away from home, a small campground at my favorite end of the ranch. This little trailer belongs to our dear friends Tom and Eddie, they are an important part of our little camp. I know that after a long day Tom will be waiting with his arms to give me a big bear hug (and maybe a cold beer). I know that if I hear their camper door open and close twice in close succession around 5am that someone got up because nature was calling, and went back for a camera to capture the sunrise. The double camper door has become my alarm to fireman my way out of bed to plein air paint the sunrise.

I suppose we are all packing up to head to the Ranch to create our gypsy village for the summer. Travel safe dear friends old and new.

I did this painting from a photo my dear friend Jodi took.

Cello at Sunset

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I wish I could add the music that I heard as I painted this sunset on Chimney Rock. It was a lovely evening.

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Notice my 4 year old resting her head in my lap as I painted and we listened to music, and those are my son’s feet behind me. He did a painting, too, we shared a box of pastels.

Sunrise 20 June 5:47am

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Between sunset last night, and sunrise this morning I went to the camp talent show. We gathered out on a beautiful porch and enjoyed songs, and poems, stories, and jokes. The desert got darker and the community closer. I found myself thinking about the year we lived in Cuba. When we arrived, we had paperwork to fill out: name, passport number, home address, and then we had to list our skill and our talent. Those were two things that everyone should have to contribute to the community. As I enjoyed the talent show last night I thought how wonderful it was, and what talent I might offer up. What would your talent be if you had a minute, a week, a month, or a year to prepare? Think about it, perhaps we will meet next summer in the desert and by the light of the stars, share a little part of ourselves in a way we humans have for thousands of years.