Yuba Love at Shenanigan Flat

on Saunders 200#

My son-in-law had set up a rope system to enable me to safely access this part of the river about two weeks ago Shenanigans at Shenanigan Flat and I can say that it worked well and in fact there is evidence that it is being used by other people besides myself.

There is change in the weather and I love it here at the river. I was able to paint till 12 noon I am amazed because usually by 9 or 10 am, the light is not that beautiful and it is over and done.

My scene for the above painting


One of my warm-up paintings on Arches 140# rough

I was having a difficult time with this painting but decided to include it just to show you a warm-up that was rough going.

on Arches 140# rough 7 x 9 inches

This stack of rocks is quite unusual because it looks like an Italian dessert. My artist eyes were starting to come in, finally!

My scene of that very cool rock
on Arches 140# rough 7 x 9 inches

this painting has its’ problems such as that little rapid showing at the middle, too sharp and not very well done. I couldn’t get the photo to show the light violet in those back rocks. The photo doesn’t do the painting justice but oh well, the task of marrying up the photo to the painting is often difficult.

My scene
on Saunders 200# 11 x 14 inches

I wasn’t going to include this painting but decided why not? I consider it a fail because I had such a difficult time with the water and depicting the white water. I enjoyed the painting of it though I just couldn’t get the water to come together as cohesive.

My scene

I have discovered that I didn’t bring by Burnt Sienna so I relied on my Daniel Smith Burnt Tiger’s Eye and I must say, I am in love! I think when it is mixed with Lunar Blue it is exquisite! Yummy color. I plan on coming back and knocking this scene out of the ball park one of these days. Here I tried painting this scene the first time: North Yuba River-Shenanigan Flat I am not sure which one session won. Looking forward to more times on the Yuba river.

I love the Yuba River, can you tell?













Shenanigan Flat-North Yuba River

painting #1  on Arches 140# 7 x 9 inches

This scene was a difficult one because of the steep trail leading down to the river and the fact that I didn’t have sun on the river for the first 90 minutes, I painted basically in the shade.

what my first scene looked like with sun
painting #2 on Fabriano 300# 11 x 14 inches

I struggled with this painting because of having such a complex scene with no focal point (hoping for a light source) I was all over the place and couldn’t focus. In other words, I didn’t have a clear path to follow.

my scene was beautiful but without sun, it was a bit dreary
painting #3 on Saunders 200# 11 x 14 inches

I then spotted the sun shining further on down the river, all I had to do was scoot my butt a 3/4 turn and I had a new scene! The sun was glowing down the river! YAY!

This scene was a bit darker in the trees in the canyon….beautiful lighting!

I used my spray bottle and did an interesting underpainting but I think that I got too carried away and should have planned out my painting a little more. All in all, I am pleased with this painting, always something to improve though plein air is not suppose to be perfect or tight.

painting #4 on Arches 140# 7 x 9 inches
my scene…..the lighting on these rocks were amazing

I wished I had done a better job on these rocks but I think that I was getting tired. I know that I probably push to paint more paintings than I am up for but I figure if I am going to venture out and hike, I might as well do as many paintings as I can.

I was thinking of not posting these paintings but decided why not? I have been a little picky and hard on myself lately. I did paint a few days ago and I have yet to upload those. I might do it as I know when I am picky, it is good for me to proceed as usual.

Learning Points:

  • Not all painting sessions are meant to be perfect and easy.
  • Keep my plan of action clear, stop and re-focus.
  • Continue to work on my values and saving my whites, I continue to struggle with this.
  • My color selections felt off today, don’t let this interfere with my enjoyment.