Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Sedona Plein Air Festival - Day 4

Morning came early with a 7 a.m. breakfast provided for the artists at the Sedona Heritage Museum. Since it was only 41 degrees, I chose to take an hour for breakfast and coffee. By 8, though, the sun had risen and things were heating up. I chose to do a vista of Ship Rock from an angle different from what I did the other day. Clouds began to spill in, and by the time I'd finished, the nice highlights on the rocks had vanished. Fortunately, I spent most of my time working on the peaks and captured the effect.

I was a little puzzled as to what to do with the foreground. I wanted it soft and fuzzy so as to not detract from the sunlit peaks, but I didn't want it to be so soft and fuzzy that it looked like a three-week old peach. My friend Betty Carr (www.bettycarrfineart.com) set up her easel beside me, and I asked her advice. Betty's a teacher, too. "Betty," I asked, "if this were your painting, what would you do next?"

She liked the painting very much and was at the brink of saying "Nothing." But then the foreground caught her attention. One of the trees made an unfortunate tangent with a bit of light on the main sunlit peak, and she suggested I move it left. I did, but I can see now that I did so without success. So, this one will need some work still during my "tweaking" period.

After lunch, I watched Clark Mitchell (www.cgmitchell.com) give a pastel demo, and then I went over to Windrush Gallery (www.windrushgallery.net) to do a demo for John McCullough. The sun had totally vanished by then, the wind was gusting, but I did a nice little piece with a theme heavy in the violets and cool greens. I'll try to get a photo of that tomorrow.

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