Rosarium Sunset

“Rosarium Sunset” 8 x 10 oil on canvasboard

On the heels of yesterday’s plein air outing at the arroyo, we went to Descanso Gardens at sunset today for some more painting and photographing. Descanso is open Thursday nights for the months of July and August. I wait all year for this opportunity to see the beautiful gardens at “golden hour” – the loveliest time (other than dawn.)

This represents one of the paths lined with rose bushes. Roughing in the painting took about an hour, from 615 t0 715, and I added finishing touches (such as the sky) after I got home. At that time of day the light was changing so rapidly there was not much point in painting after an hour had elapsed. I finished it off at home, refinining edges, adjusting things. The above painting represents the colors as they really are under room light conditions. The photographs below are more bluish, representing shady daylight conditions.

I promised some people that the very next time I went out painting with my lightweight easel that I would take pictures of the shelf in closeup, so here they are. I made a cardboard mock-up to work out the dimensions, then gave it to my husband who cut it out of 1/4″ masonite. There are no supports underneath the shelf other than two little L brackets to reinforce the holes. It sits on the easel by a friction-fit.


  1. Linda
    July 6, 2007

    I’m amazed that the construction of that works as well as it does! That’s TOO cool! I see a jigsaw in the future … ;-)
    I’m wondering how you’re finding oils compare to watercolor, too …

  2. Jana Bouc
    July 6, 2007

    That’s great (the painting and the shelf)! And I bet, unlike my shelf that came with my easel, you were able to design yours it so it’s at the right height for you. Mine is a little too low (as are most things in this world that wasn’t made for tall people). Very cool setup and even better, you’re making great use of it!

  3. lindsay
    July 7, 2007

    Thansk for sharing your shelf. Great idea. I am so enjoying all your plein air paintings. Really wonderful work. You just keep getting better.

  4. Karen
    July 7, 2007

    Thank you, everyone

    Linda, I like oils as much as I like watercolor, only different. It’s like one’s kids – you love them both, just in different ways because each is a unique experience. I find oils, as a rule, to be easier than watercolor, and more forgiving.

    Jana – are you tall also – me too! Yes there is an advantage to making one’s own JUST the way we like it.

    Thank you Lydia and Lindsay.

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