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On not being a one trick pony

Today the billowing clouds are racing across the sky...and the temptation was once again to do a cloud-scape. But in looking at some really nice work in a new gallery in Bend, I of course was subject to the usual artist angst...."Am I only about clouds?"(Last year I was only about abandoned ranches!). So I decided to let out my "inner tree." It was a eucalyptus tree I snapped from our car somewhere near Red Bluff, California. This is particularly significant to me, as a child I spent summers...very hot Red Bluff and Chico. My father's family settled this area in around 1850. The west is really in my blood.
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What Would Maynard Dixon Paint?

A tribute to Maynard Dixon
I have been working and re-working this painting for months. It is 40x40...and the original scene was from photos taken last year in Colorado. But the foreground was always off. At first (after a good sanding) I attempted to put the clouds above some rolling hills in Eastern Oregon...but it read like two paintings. Then I realized that I had some photo scrap from just about 10 miles from here, where the clouds were almost out with the sander again, and the painting knife for noticeable impasto work...and this is the result. I will do some minor touch up, but think it is saved from another sanding. Whew...often when I repaint, it all goes for naught. But the spirit of Maynard Dixon was hovering over me and think his influence worked.
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Two for ......

Today I was at Tumalo Gallery ( from 10 AM to 8 PM...the long shift is easier for me as I live waaaaaay outside of Bend. However, even on a fairly busy day (business is picking up), these are a lot of hours. So I generally bring my little Guerrilla Box and paint. Today i did two studies, each 5x7 inches. One if from a photo of an empty boat, early in the morning with the mist on the lake with South Sister in the background; the other of a river in Eastern, Oregon. Neither are finished...and may never be..or may be sanded over. But I find that just doing these little paintings keeps my mind agile. And it is a LONG day!
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Finally, a few hours for plein air...

After a day of sun last week, rain threatened...and it is supposed to get down to 30 degrees tonight...but there have been a few hours of watery sunlight...almost enough to paint a simple high desert scene.
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Waiting for Summer
I finally got out to paint. It is about time. Chose a simple subject so that I can warm up for plein air painting. PAPO (Plein Air Painters of Oregon) will be having a show, and I need some works to enter (though I may enter a painting from last fall, done in southern Oregon). This little painting says it all...we have waited a long time for a nice day!
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Maynard Dixon rules...

Light Shining Through
This little from some photos that I took last year at Warner Valley. I tried to paint that day but it was cold and blustery...and later there was a HUGE storm. But I did manage some great photos that have sustained me through what has been a terribly long winter and wet/cold/snowy spring.
I haven't put it in my main pages as the color in the photograph is not true...and I may also do some scrumbling tomorrow. (Tomorrow is here...did the scrumbling,a nd took a better photo.)
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And paint I must...

View from Our Campsite.
This is actually a retouched little plein air painting from last year. It was painted in the evening after I thought I was through. In fact I had settled into our campsite with a glass of red wine. But the sunset was so great that I just dashed off an impression. Today, I did a very small amount of touch up.
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Just A Gal Who Can't Say "NO!"

West of Burns, Oregon
Yesterday I reviewed my schedule and realized I am committed to 6 shows this summer/fall...and two are solo shows. Yep, must be greed or some form of dementia. So I am painting madly, including going back over some plein air work I did last year and re-interpreting it for the show. My mantra is "Only exhibit what you think is your best," so I am really putting a lot of pressure on myself.
But that is the way I am...
This painting is from some photo reference I took as we drove towards Burns, Oregon. I love the vastness of this stretch of land.
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