Saturday, November 22, 2014

Rainy Day Paintings

"Fall Rains in the Vineyards"
22" x 15" watercolor
"Artists at Work"
11.5" x 5.5" watercolor

Thursday I joined the plein air group at Clos La Chance Winery, a gorgeous winery about 15 miles south of my home. Many paint sites are north of me, so I grab at the chance to go south, away from traffic. Weather predictions were very iffy, with rain predicted for about 1 pm. We had a great turnout of hardy artists.

The vineyards, though past their peak color, were still very beautiful shades of gold, rust, and red backed by colorful mountains with clouds and fog over them. I began the top painting with a watercolor wash. Contrary to my saying I would paint over acrylic, I felt I couldn't prime the paper ahead of time because I was unsure of the colors,  and I did not want to do it in the field. I had laid in the wash and started the painting when it began to rain, three hours ahead of schedule. My painting shows the sprinkles on it. I took refuge under a winery patio umbrella and continued to work the painting. I decided to embrace the pointillist look as part of the atmosphere. I felt a bit like George Seurat painting "Picnic in the Park."

We are all thrilled to have some rain in drought-stricken California, so no one uttered a complaint, just went on painting. At one point I strolled up above my paint site and caught a photo of three of the artists painting with a brush in one hand and an umbrella in the other. They very nicely wore jackets of primary colors -- yellow, blue, and red. I had to paint them. For this little sketch, I selected my panoramic Arches pad, so I could show the colorful landscape.

Three hours of painting was followed by lunch. The winery folks very nicely allowed us to use tables set up for an event inside. The place is like a French Riviera villa, so we enjoyed really fine digs for our picnic lunches. Check out the photos on the paintsites blog and enjoy co-leader Brad's playful description. He is one terrific writer.

I headed home in quite a downpour -- LOVELY!


Mary said...

What a lovely description of your day, Mary. And I love the way you embraced the raindrop spots on your piece--very cool. You made two delightful pieces, which create a lively reflection of your outing.

hmuxo said...

Beautiful watercolors, Mary!! I loved how you painted the misty atmosphere..and a nice treat to see everyone's work in your group!

Candy said...

These are quite lovely, Mary. I checked out the photos. It looks like fun. Would you please send a little rain our way, too?

CrimsonLeaves said...

The raindrops did indeed give beautiful pointillistic effects, Mary. You had one grand day indeed and the paintings are lovely!

martinealison said...

Bonjour chère amie,

Je n'aurais pas aimé travailler sous la pluie, mais la présentation que vous nous faites de cette belle journée rend ce moment agréable. L'atmosphère crée par cette belle assemblée de d'amis apporte de l'enthousiasme.
Je me réjouis d'admirer ces deux superbes aquarelles aux couleurs harmonieuses et automnales. J'aime beaucoup celle avec la présence de vos collègues aux parapluies. Il est vrai que les vignes composent un magnifique décor qui ne peut que séduire.

Gros bisous ♡

Mary Paquet said...

Laura Leader left me a lovely comment:

Sounds like a wonderful day was enjoyed by all artists.

Something went URP! and it disappeared. Thanks, Laura.