This summer I had a chance to hit Telluride for three days of plein air painting with a couple of Denver Illustration Salon members; Clay Brooks and Ryan Morse*. I made progress fast, from the sorta-sad first paintings to the almost-there paintings near the end of the trip.
We arrived in town at about 5 pm, and were painting by 6. I'd decided to try gouache for the trip, and had pre-grounded most of my paper with a greyed reddish color. I'm new to the medium, but not unhappy with the attempts.
Every day we were up early in order to bag as many paintings as possible.
It rained off and on the whole time...
...but the clouds were nearly as dramatic as the scenery. Here's another view from the top of the Gondola...
The few remaining shacks in the gentrified town gave me my favorite painting of the trip.
Unfortunately, I had painted under a green umbrella, which totally skewed my color choices. I'd also made the poor decision to experiment with a blue ground. Still, the falls and surrounding landscape were so gorgeous I can't complain. And I was learning quite a bit about what not to do, too.
The trip was initiated by Clay, who was there for the Telluride Plein Air Festival. Here's all his work from the trip on the first sale-day of the festival (my last day there).
When I got home, I still had the plein air itch, so the maple tree in my front yard was a great, (although more-ordinary-than-Telluride) subject.
The previous three days of continual on-location painting had helped tremendously. I'd gained confidence, and solutions and techniques were still fresh in my memory (unlike the forgetting I tend to do when painting on-location only once a week or so).
Be sure to check out Clay Brooks' site
*A couple of Ryan's oils from the trip. Click for Ryan Morse's site
And thanks for reading!