Tag: Landscape

Stormy Vortex in Sedona

The storm over Cathedral Rock comes closer in at 1:00 pm. The sky darkens.

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Before too long it’s time to skate along the side of the meadow to Oak Creek at the base.

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The water roils and churns, inspiring, the slabs of red rock lay flat.

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We dodge under some gentle oaks and watch the rain on the creek.

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After some time we walk slowly back to the meadows as the sun comes back out again.

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And start another sketch, this time in oil. The spirit of the ancestors has wound its way around.

Cathedral Rock and the Vortex, Sedona

The mysterious red rocks of Sedona, Arizona. Inspiring in all weathers.
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A recent excursion led us to Cathedral Rock, a sacred site where drawing and painting en plein aire only suggests the richness and power of Mother Earth.
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Even the standing majesty of the sycamores, alder and oaks catch electric light.
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I begin a pastel sketch while the sky is still a benign blue.
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14 X 11 inches on Pastel Board.
By mid-morning the sky turns threatening, and as if the Vortex surrounding the Cathedral could speak, the skies darken and begin to open up. We pack up, but stay in the gathering rain, enjoying the moisture. Who doesn’t appreciate the gift of monsoon?
More on dodging monsoons in Sedona and experiencing the spiritual Vortex later.
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Any other Vortex lovers?

Aravaipa Canyon, Spring

The majestic and awesome Aravaipa Canyon, in central Arizona.

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Can one even try to capture the raw beauty?

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(oil sketch, 6 x 12 inches).

A little further down the trail,

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with a view of the Cottonwood grove in the canyon.

A little pastel sketch begun,

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a little more…

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And then it’s time for a late afternoon Sycamore sketch in oil.

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The oil palette, very tidy.

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Aravaipa is so lovely in the late spring.

Rincon Peak from the Miller Creek Trail

To get to the beautiful and scenic Rincon Peak from Tucson takes about an hour and a half, promising a warm afternoon of painting en plein aire.  

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Before you get to the Miller Creek Trailhead, however, you must past the old movie set, the town of Mescal.

ImageA town not too tough to die, but desolated anyway. Seasonal tours on Saturdays. Not sure what movies were made there. Do you know of any?

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Then passing through Happy Valley, beautiful Oak, Sycamore, Juniper and Mesquite trees surround dry creek beds. Until finally we set up in a spot near the Miller Creek Trailhead. The trail is an 8 hour hike to the top of Rincon Peak. We’ll stay below.

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Finished oil sketch, 14 x 16 inches. A study for a future studio piece to come. It was 100 degrees when we got back to Tucson Town! Isn’t it too early for that?

Pena Blanca Lake

Spending the day at this remote location near the Mexican border offered the opportunity to record morning and afternoon light in an oil sketch and a pastel drawing.

 

View of Pena Blanca Lake, a lake stocked with fish and popular with local picnickers.
Beginning of oil sketch.
Finished oil sketch.

In the afternoon there were some lovely high vistas which made for a dramatic view of boulders and water.

 

High view of Pena Blanca Lake.
Resulting pastel drawing on clayboard, 12 x 10".

Another beautiful day in southern Arizona!