Yuba River-Rocky Rest

Painting #1 on Arches 140# rough 7 x 9 inches

Real Life got in the way for the past 10 days. My husband came home from a fire assignment and while he was on R & R we made a trip over the Sonoma Plein Air Festival. Very inspiring and I was biting the bit to get out to the river to paint.

It has been years since I painted this scene and the last time was several years ago with snow still on the ground though I had painted with pastels rather than my watercolors.

My scene with that special fall lighting


Painting #2 on Arches 140# 7 x 9 inches


Painting #3 on Fabriano 300# 11 x 14 inches
A close-up of my scene


I was hoping for more on this one but decided that I could always finish it up in the studio.

Painting #4 on Arches 140# 7 x 9 inches

I wasn’t able to crop this one properly, I cut off the bottom which as the water flowing around the rocks. I got impatient trying for the perfect photo! What was fun with this painting (#4) is that I decided to purposely make myself uncomfortable by using a different brush, a flat. I have been using my squirrel mop for months now and I wanted to challenge myself and use a brush that I haven’t used in a while. Also, I didn’t tape the paper onto a board, I painted it on the rocky beach with my legs at an awkward angle, scrawled about my water and paints. Anything to get myself to paint on the edge and stop being so careful.

To me it worked because it is my favorite one out of the bunch!

Learning Points:

  • Keep painting even when you feel like you are painting blind!
  • I found myself wanting to diss my painting while working, having a critic on your shoulder inhibits and diminishes your joy.
  • Dare to use an unfamiliar brush or technique to get out on the edge of the rock of creativity, sometimes the view or experience is so much more exciting!
  • Pare down what you see to simplicity, keeps the painting fresh looking and off the cuff.
Yuba Notes

48 thoughts on “Yuba River-Rocky Rest

  1. Beautiful and spontaneous work…just as watercolour was meant to be used. My goodness you do have such glorious Plein Air opportunities close at hand. Sometimes I stay with my artist friend Bonnie Halsey Dutton in the Black Hills of S. Dakota, and there is similar beauty. Hope you are able to paint over the weekend…janet. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. These are fantastic! All of them. ♥ And the first learning point is a great one to keep in mind always, sometimes its so tempting to let go at the first frustration. I’m glad you kept going with these! 🙂

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  3. At last you got the real world out of the way so you could paint again? Great to see you back painting, and great work. I like all of them, but especially the repetitive shapes in #3 and #4. Are you still working on your abstract that keeps evolving?

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      1. Good luck with getting back into that abstract work! I have some abstract or semi-abstract painters I look at on Pinterest, and sometimes I just do a small copy of one of their work in charcoal or oil, just to relax my hold on the realism perspective a bit. Knowing it will be discarded makes me very relaxed about the process, and also knowing that I am copying some famous artist makes me less critical, so I don’t ask “Is this art?” all the time. After doing a few of those I have more confidence going back and creating something of my own. Something of that relaxed abstractness always sticks though, so be careful who you mimic!

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  4. Margaret! Hello, my friend! I need to pull this up on s PC because for some reason this iPad isn’t pulling your images through. I’ve visited a few places tonight and this is the first time I’ve had an issue, no clue why, I see the boxes but they just say the filename. I’m not in my Reader, I’m in an Internet browser. I will try and remember to check your paintings out next time I’m on a PC. Sending love and hugs to you, PW! 💜💜💜🍂🍁🙏🏻

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Ok I refreshed the screen and now I’m seeing the images! I like that none of these look fiddled with at all, it’s like you got your impressions down, you kept your colors fresh and clean and you moseyed along! I think number 4 is my favorite but 2 is a close second, love those colors!

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  6. I love, LOVE how fresh these look! wow. I really like one, and I love the blurring of the dark color on the front rock in 4 and just the feel of them all. you must be very happy to have such successful paintings!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Wow!! Love your fall colors in your paintings, Margaret! 🍂🍃🍂 And such awesome scenery!!! 😄🎨 I understand about being busy and behind. 😉 I finally got Part 2 of my bookmaking series on my blog done today. 😄👍

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