Friday, November 4, 2011

Zion National Park Plein Air Event - Day 4

Thursday was another crisp start, though not as cold.  I felt like a hike to get the blood moving, so I parked at Zion Lodge and hiked to one of the Emerald Pools.  There are three of them, and I went to the lower pool (above.)  The pool is filled by a falls from a cliff high overhead the trail, and as I wanted to stay dry - and thus warm - I didn't venture past the falls.  Admittedly, the falls didn't have much water at this time of year, but I think they would be very impressive in the spring.  This side canyon had a lot of good color in it, especially the red of the oaks, which glowed in the canyon's shade.

Once again, I headed back to Court of the Patriarchs.  This time, I made a point of hiking out into the sun to stay warm, where I did a 9x12 and a quick 5x7.  The 5x7 was more of an abstract set of color-notes of cliff shadows than a full-fledged painting.  Afterward, I headed down the canyon to a pull-off near the start of the canyon road.   It's where I saw Josh Been and Bill Cramer the first day, and it seemed worth exploring.  It was overwhelming!  The view from the edge of the river encompasses enough material for dozens of paintings.  Below is a shot of the location.  Dwarfed by this majestic view is painter Dennis Farris of Texas, who recently was the artist-in-residence in the AIR program at Zion.

But I didn't paint the view.  For my last unscheduled painting of the week, I wanted something more intimate and, to my majesty-weary eyes, less tiring.  I found a large sandstone boulder surrounded by chamisa.  I know, it doesn't sound like much, but the warm, reflected lights in the boulder's shadow really caught my eye.

In the afternoon I had to select five paintings to prepare for the show today (Friday.)  It was a tough choice, as I have several good ones beyond the five.   Below are the ones that'll be in the Friday night Buyer's Preview Gala.   I'm sure they'll look better in person - they always do - so make sure you come to the Nature Center to see them firsthand!

Autumn's Turn, 9x12, oil

Beneath the Great White Throne, 9x12, oil

Little Gem, 12x9, oil

Patriarch, 16x12, oil

River Dance, 9x12, oil

In the evening, we had the second and final Meet the Artists event, held at The Spotted Dog Cafe.  I enjoyed dinner with Royden Card and his wife, and it was also good to see new work by all the artists.   Thanks to owner Rebecca McKown for sponsoring our dinner and a space to show our work.

So, what's left as we draw toward the end?  Today is the noontime Quick Draw event, held at the Zion Lodge, followed immediately by an auction.  (We have only 90 minutes to start and complete a piece!)  Tonight is the Gala, which I've already mentioned.  On Saturday, there's is the public sale at the Nature Center from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., followed by a lecture at 7:30 on "Creating and Sustaining an Art Collection" at the Lodge.  Sunday we have the final sale from 9 to noon.


Jo Castillo said...

Hi Michael, I usually frame my pastels against the glass. For demos though, I have cut the paper the size of the frame, example 16 x 20 then marked off the mat area, 11 x 14. I paint with pastels on the 11 x 14 area, then you can put the clean glass, the mat, the painting, foamcore back board, clip it in and you are good to go. I prefer against the glass so no chance of the pastel falling on the glass, but it is a way to frame quickly for a demo. So might work for plein air, too.

I love these recent pantings from both here and Sedona. You are amazing at capturing the space and painting quickly. Thanks for sharing.

Michael Chesley Johnson said...

Thanks,Jo! Great tips!