Sunday, April 19, 2009

Spring Color: Red Willows

"Rio Hondo Spring"
9x12, oil

Arroyo Hondo is touted as being a painting destination, so today we drove north to where the Rio Hondo wanders away from the highway and followed the river west, where it joins the Rio Grande. The town of Arroyo Hondo is filled with very paintable adobes and views of pastures and distant, snow-capped mountains, but we kept going. Pavement turned to dirt, and the road wound down toward the river.

We ended up near the John Dunn Bridge, nestled in the canyon where the two rivers join. Rich color filled the red willows, the water was rushing fast, and steep canyon walls towered above. Now this is the kind of scene I like! I felt yesterday's painting was a bit fussy, so I played a bit more loosely with this one. I had better light today, too. Strong sunlight and deep shadows make for easier paintings than hazy, filtered light.

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