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Saturday, June 12, 2010

100 plein air paintings in 100 days - #41/#42

#41 - "Hidden Treasure"
Original Oil 6x8"

10/06/01 (12:30pm)
This waterfall was raging! Full spring run-off.  To walk up and view a waterfall like this for a few moments is spectacular. To stand in the continual mist of its spray and listen to its thunder for and hour or two while painting it was one of the most powerful plein air experiences I have ever had. It was cloudy for a part of the time, so every time the sun poked it's little head out and lit up the water, it was a race to get the good stuff down before it was gone. Here's a photo of the falls:

#42 - "Juniper Ridge"
Original Oil 6x8"
For purchase info click here

10/06/01 (6:30pm)
Two big learnings on this one. The first I walked right into. As I was drawing out I heard John Carlson's voice in my head saying, "Always start your foreground at least 50 feet in front of you or you will get caught up in unnecessary detail". Yup, pretty much exactly what happened, lost a lot of valuable time there as the light was slipping away. Note to self: Don't do that again. Second one, I thought I would be bold and start with a Dioxazine Purple ground. Note to self: NEVER do that again. It stained the canvas SO dark, couldn't wipe it down to a light value, which wreaked havoc with all of my colour and value judgements - made me completely mental. Super bad plan.

These two pieces were painted on my way back from Vancouver at a stop-over with my good friend Gaye Adams in Sorrento. Loved this photo of her, coffee in hand, scouting locations:

 Note: Sorry this post is a day late. I'm teaching a 3 day workshop this weekend and just ran out of day yesterday. I'll make up the lost one before the project ends.


  1. Oh Liz - #41 is solid! I love seeing what the actual scene was, and the decisions you made. It is really fresh and powerful. I can hear the water and the bit of mist is done so well. The rocks are painted so beautifully...everything is terrific.

  2. Thanks Kim! For me the most important decision was that the waterfall needed to be bigger than the outflow - how it would have appeared could I have gotten closer to it. (Ran out of shoreline). This is definitely my favourite of the project so far.

  3. Hi Liz,
    Your posts are so entertaining and enlightening! It's so refreshing that you are so willing to share your successes as well as your frustrations! Gorgeous little gems, as usual ;)
    PS..I bet Lily loved the waterfall!

  4. Hi Liz, Love them both, they have such great light. I think these are my favorites so far. You are obviously learning and growing so much as you go along. Great job! and thanks for sharing all of your insights.

  5. Is 41 for sale? I don't see a "click to bid" button. I wouldn't blame you for wanting to keep that one though!

  6. Hi Laurel - 41 is not for sale. I would like to keep at least 3 or 4 paintings from this project for my own collection as a memory of the experience, and this was a particularly memorable one.

  7. Interesting tip on avoiding detail! your images are so enjoyable to view.

  8. Love your waterfall piece. That's a tough thing to simplify, but you pulled it off in spades! Way to go! You get any better and I may have to break your brushes.

  9. It's been a delight, and I learned a lot in
    accompany this his extraordinary pictorial adventure.
    Deserves much success.
    Congratulations, your fan from Portugal.
    If you do not get me wrong not only to send you greetings, as a kiss.

  10. I love it when you show us a photo as well as the finished work. That waterfall is masterful. Juniper Ridge is also great. It takes a bold brush to make the lake as light as it needs to be. You did it.

  11. I've just discovered you and your work while browsing through Gay Adams site. As an amateur I make a ton of mistakes and one of them was painting the landscape directly in front of, no, no!

    1. Yup, no no no, and the next time you do it, no no no.....Amnesia is a persistent quality in humans. :-)