San Luis Obispo Flower Fields
9 x 12
oil on linen plein air panel
This is one of the paintings that I did for the San Luis Obispo Plein Air Festival, sponsored by the San Luis Obispo Museum of Art.
It was painted the first day of the paint out, bright and early Monday morning, along a rural road. A photographer for SLO City News saw me painting by the side of the road and spent some time taking pictures of the work in progress. It was a nice surprise to find out that it made the cover of the paper …
8 x 10 oil on linen plein air panel
This painting was painted for the 2012 San Luis Obispo Plein Air Festival and hung in the San Luis Obispo Museum of Art.
The official festival stamp is on the back side. Sycamores are among our most beautiful California trees, and in the fall they are especially radiant as the colors change.
The active brushwork indicates the way the breeze stirs the leaves of the tree. The use of transparent color creates a luminosity that makes the leaves glow as though light was shining through them.
I returned a few days ago from a wonderful week long event at the San Luis Obispo Plein Air Festival. Over the next week or so, I’ll be posting the paintings I did there, many of which have already gone to new homes. Others, however, are still available.
This beautiful eucalyptus tree in Los Osos begged to be painted. Silhouetted in the late afternoon light, a field of flowers lay at its feet. The flowers are a seed crop, and I think they may have been marigolds.
If you are in the Southern California area this weekend, please visit me at the Pasadena Artwalk on El Molino Street on Saturday. I will have a booth quite near the Pasadena Playhouse, with a wide assortment of my current paintings. The address is El Molino Street, between Colorado Blvd and Green Street in the Playhouse district. The show opens between 10 and 11 (I’ll probably be set up early) and goes until 5 pm. This is a great opportunity to pick up a Christmas present – hope to see you there.
See more of my California Central Coast paintings here
“Cloudy Day at San Simeon” (Big Sur, California)
12 x 16 oil
The southern part of Big Sur, California is at San Simeon, the site of Hearst’s Castle. The dramatic ocean cliffs frame the always changing sea. The day I painted this the sun was peeking through from time to time, but overall the scene was moody, with blowing fog and moving clouds. I actually like these sorts of days as well as the ones with bright sunshine.
Below, a photo of me working on it on location:
“Meanwhile, at the Hacienda”
9 x 12 oil on linen panel
plein air painting – painted at Mission San Antonio de Padua
California Central Coast area
During the California Art Club paint out at the mission, I came upon this small guest house which intrigued me as a painting subject. In the late afternoon light, I could imagine it as an old California adobe, cool inside in spite of the surrounding heat. Some early model chickens miraculously appeared where a late model car had been.
Mission San Antonio Morning
(San Antonio de Padua, California Central Coast, northwest of Paso Robles)
9 x 12 inches
Oil on linen plein air panel
In early June 2012, I joined a group of other California Art Club artists to paint at Mission San Antonio de Padua, a California mission that is the most “untouched” of the chain. Although some outbuildings and residential quarters have been added, the setting is very much as it might have been hundreds of years ago. This side of the building, the facade where one enters the church, remains much as it was in the early years. By mid day this was all in shade, so morning is the time to catch it. We were up before dawn getting set up to capture the light. We were warned several times to watch out for rattlesnakes. It’s easy to become so focused on what you’re painting that you might not notice one that’s emerged from a hole while you are painting. I didn’t see one, thankfully, but I was certainly careful where I stepped.
9 x 12 oil on plein air linen panel
Painted at the Tejon Ranch, May 2012
In the middle of a warm spring day, just about high noon, a mighty Tejon Ranch oak spreads its limbs to offer shade to all who visit. Cattle, mostly, but most likely some other critters, too. This majestic tree was silhouetted against the rolling hills and mountains of the ranch. Wherever you look, beauty surrounds you, making it a real treat for plein air painters – even during the part of the day when the light is less than dramatic. (That’s why we get up at dawn and stay painting until moonrise, when we can.
Below, a photo of my work in progress. There were occasional gusts of wind which threatened to topple my umbrella. A road hazard sawhorse came in handy. Sometimes you’ve just got to improvise.
Sunrise in the Oaks – Tejon Ranch California plein air Landscape impressionist oil painting by Karen Winters
“Sunrise in the Oaks”
11 x 14 oil on linen plein air panel
Tejon Ranch, May 2012
See more of my oak tree paintings here
REMINDER – Artists reception for my show at Gale’s Restaurant, Sunday, May 20 – 4-6 pm, 452 S. Fairoaks Ave., Pasadena
Good morning, Tejon. A small band of intrepid California Art Club plein air painters woke at 4 am to get to the ranch and queue up in our vehicles to be on site before the sun rose. I had found my perfect spot – on Sycamore Creek, looking eastward just as the sun peeked over the hills and made the leaves of the old oak dazzle with the backlight. I had to bundle up and dress in layers, knowing that before long I’d be peeling them off as the day turned warm. This, like all of the Tejon Ranch, is absolutely beautiful – a real treat for plein air painters. We appreciate the invitation and the privilege to be there.
12 x 12 inches
Oil on linen plein air panel
Between outdoor shows, travel, commissions and paint outs, I haven’t been taking the time to update my blog, but I’m going to try to get back on top of that. This was painted last week at the Tejon Ranch on a paint out with the Kern County chapter of the California Art Club.
This grove of sycamores was growing along side a stream bed. I set up my easel near by, taking care to keep a lookout for rattlesnakes. When an artist is concentrating and working in one area for a long time, a snake can quietly move in – even next to your easel, and you wouldn’t know it. The tall grasses are a perfect hiding spot. Fortunately, this was only a broken tree limb (below). But it sure gave me a start for a moment!
When you look at the picture below you might notice that there is no dazzling light. That’s because the ending photo was taken after the moment of light was long gone. When painting outdoors you often have to hold the image in your memory because the light is constantly shifting.
If you’re in the LA area, you are invited to attend the reception for my solo show at Gale’s Restaurant in Pasadena, from 4-6 pm. Gale’s is at 452 S. Fairoaks Avenue, just south of Del Mar. More about the event tomorrow.
Morro Rock Dunes – Morro Bay Oil Painting – California Central Coast Seascape Impressionist painting by Karen Winters
“Morro Rock Dunes”
9 x 12 oil on canvas
This is another of the plein air oil paintings which I did last fall at the San Luis Obispo Plein Air Festival. At the end of the day, as the sun headed for the horizon, the mist from the sea blew in, partly obscuring the large rock. Ice plant provided a colorful counterpoint to the grays and browns of this massive geologic feature.