"Fall Colors in San Jose"
9" x 7" Watercolor
Yesterday was an informal plein air session for the Santa Clara Valley Watercolor Society. There are either two or three sessions each month. Often the leaders call for Hike and Sketch at a local park on one of the off Thursdays. This week the park was close by, Guadalupe Oak Grove Park in the middle of residential Almaden Valley. Soon more photos of work done by the artists will be posted on the SCVWS Paint Sites Blog. Give about a week for them to show up.
We had a half dozen of us who set out on a cool sunny morning and soon had to shed layers as the day warmed. We hiked up a steep hill and had a marvelous view of the valleys and Almaden Lake. We stopped to sketch for a half hour. I was too ambitious and more work is needed on that piece. We dipped down and up following the ridge to an old sandstone quarry. Many chose to paint the quarry, but I liked the view of the downtown across the neighborhood trees that had quite a bit of Fall color. Interestingly, most people think we don't have seasons and thus no color, but that is not true. It cools by now, sometimes into the 30s at night, but 50s to 70s in midday. I come from the very colorful state of Vermont, but I am still impressed by the colors of San Jose, especially when viewed from above. You see, our deciduous trees tend mostly to be in the flats of our valleys that can stretch for miles, best viewed from a hill or mountain. In Vermont, the ubiquitous mountains are covered with trees that change, so can be viewed from the valleys.
I was thinking a bit of our recent Frank Francese demo and the vivid colors he uses as I did this little piece.