I spent almost a week in Northwest Wisconsin painting and drawing the landscape as part of the Go Paint Chippewa Valley Plein Aire event sponsored by the Pablo Arts Center. The week began with a Quick Paint event on Saturday, September 24th held in downtown Eau Claire on the banks of the Eau Claire and Chippewa Rivers.
My quick paint drawing was done on a 10 by 13 sheet of Stonehedge paper. I used colored inks for the majority of the drawing. I used some pastel pencils to put finishing touches on the foliage. I like how the clouds and the foliage help the viewer see the breeze that I felt that day.
The following day, I painted in Owen Park which is also in downtown Eau Claire. This park in on the opposite side of the Chippewa River. This park runs alongside the river for several blocks and there are multiple bridges viewable from that par. I decided to paint a view that includes the Lake Street bridge. I was unable to complete the painting in just one afternoon, so I returned to the same spot later in the week, to finish the painting. The photo was taken during the afternoon of September 26th. It was very windy that day and the sky had an increasing number of clouds as the afternoon passed by. When I came back to that spot a couple of days later, the day was sunny and the sky hardly any clouds. The sky was bluer in hue and so was the river.
On Monday, September 26th, I painted in the Rod and Gun Park which is on the site of a former fish hatchery. This is a heavily wooded park with multiple manmade streams that are about 4 feet wide, that were built by the hatchery. I chose not to focus on the manmade elements in the park. I found a tree whose leaves were starting to turn yellow an began a painting of that tree. That painting is not yet finished.
On Tuesday, September 27, I painted in Altoona, WI in the River Prairie Park. This park is a preserve for prairie grasses and flowers. It is located on the south shore of the Eau Claire Park. This river has high bluffs on both sides. I was awed by the height of these bluffs. So I painted the river and the bluff on the North side of the river. The bluff looks like a solid wall of rock with a forest on the top. I needed to afternoons to finish this painting. The photo below shows the spot and the painting that is almost finished. I learned on October 6th, that this painting received an Honorable Mention award in the Go Paint Chippewa Valley exhibit. The judge (James Boyd Brent) commented, “There is a really strong, bold, gestural feeling-everything feels alive.”
On Wednesday, September 28, I spent the morning at the Caddie Woodlawn Park located south of Menominee, WI. This park has the childhood home of Caddie Woodlawn and it also has the Flick Log Cabin. I sketched the cabin.
On Wednesday afternoon, I painted in the Veteran’s Memorial Park in downtown Durand, WI. I painted a view of the Chippewa River and the Highway 10 bridge.
Terrific work, congratulations!