Friday, August 8, 2008

Paint the Wildflowers of the Pacific Northwest

Paint the Wildflowers of the Pacific Northwest is the next watercolor class I will be teaching in Seattle at the Daniel Smith Classroom.
Working from an assortment of high resolution digital photos taken over the past 3-4 years in Mt Rainier National Park and the Cascade foothills this class will focus on close-up views of individual flowers as well as natural groupings or clusters of wildflowers as they can be found in the meadows or along the trails.
Seating is limited to 14 painters. There are still a few seats left so if you want to join us for a fun day of painting wildflowers call my studio @ 253-859-1111 asap.
Where: Seattle Daniel Smith Classroom
What: Paint the Wildflowers of the Pacific Northwest in Watercolor
Who: Susie Short, watercolor teacher --- All skill levels welcome
When: August 18, 2008 10:00 am - 3:30 pm
Cost: $55 paid in advance

Basic Watercolor Supplies -- Supply List emiled upon request.
For More information visit my website
or contact me (Susie)

Thursday, August 7, 2008

From my sketchbook - Plein Air Sketches

These are the sketches I painted sitting in my van while the fog rolled by. Even though the day was chilly and the air was damp, being up there....close to the top of the world... was a pleasure.
They say the mountain creates its own weather. For what ever reason it just needed to be behind the blanket of fog that Friday.
Whenever I look at these little 6x8 sketches I'll remember ... I was there.
Sigh............ so much to paint so little time!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Sunday - Plein Air on Mt Rainier 080308


What a difference a day makes! The previous twenty-four hours were filled with a fog that rolled in and out of our base camp at Sunrise. On Sunday the sun was shining and the sky was the most beautiful azure blue you have ever seen!

We had a wonderful view of the mountain and the wildflowers. My nose and cheeks got a little pink during my 2 hour demo. Sunscreen was definitely a must on this day! As you can see we all were able to make the most of of afternoon. It always amazes me that even though we were all looking at the same mountain and foreground we all came up with really different paintings of the same view. After we painted for a while several of us took to the trails to see how many more wildflowers we could find to photograph for future paintings.

2008 will go down in our books as one of the best years for painting the wildflowers en plein air.

My thanks to the fourteen painters who made my trip to the mountain a pleasurable treat.
It's my hope that you will join me again next year to see what "the mountain" has for us in 2009.
Until next time....keep those brushes wet!


Monday, August 4, 2008

Plein Air Paint Out @ Mt Rainier National Park - August 1-2-3, 2008

This past weekend, (August 1-2-3, 2008) fourteen fellow watercolor artists joined me to take advantage of the limited opportunity to visit and paint Mount Rainier's meadows of wildflowers, which usually flourish in late July and early August. Fortunately, our scheduled dates to paint "en Plein Air" at Sunrise Visitor's Center was a good choice and the blooms were near peak for our visit. It was reported that the long winter season of 2008 with it's heavy snowfall has been trying to fool Mother Nature. And we all understood when the park ranger explains, "the plants won’t bloom until the snow melts away and the sun shines. "
The best news is that even though the bloom season for many of the flowers was delayed by the lingering snowfall most of the wildflowers were all blooming at once and creating a spectacular display for us to capture on paper! Oh, what a colorful sight to behold! Soft hues of blue and bright yellow, crisp magenta and pale lavender, creamy white and luscious greens made up the perfect wildflower palette.

Mt Rainier was playing a game of hide and seek with us as far as the weather was concerned. On Friday a blanket of thick fog that never lifted to give us a glimpse of "the mountain" from our base at Sunrise located at 6,400 ft. The day of fog was cold and wet with intermittent rain showers. I was able to take advantage of the many wildflower photo opportunities I found at the lower elevations along the drive up to Sunrise. (And I got some great photos of the trees through the fog too.)

These photos were taken on Friday, August 1, 2008 - I was the only painter in our group that made it to the mountain to paint this day. I took many photos and painted two sketches in my field sketch book.

More to come............SUSIE

Saturday, started out foggy. As seven artists gathered for a "meet and greet" we wondered if we would even get a glimpse of Mt Rainier. We could however see the glorious wildflowers on the meadow in the opposite direction. While I was painting the demo of the wildflower meadow that extended to a rugged peak, the clouds parted and the mountain in all its glory allowed us to say hello. For the next 3 hours we had off and on quick glimpses of Little Tahoma and Mt Rainier's glaciers. Our focus of the wildflower meadow yielded a handsome array of watercolor paintings.

The beauty of the snowcapped mountain known as Mt Rainier is complemented by the park's famous wildflowers that bloom in the meadows on its slopes after the snow has melted in mid-summer. We were there to paint both the mountain and the meadow's wildflowers!

Read my next post about Sunday's Plein Air Painting...


Our artist pal Joe is missing from the photo. Joe did arrived in time to see some sunshine. We accused him of bringing the waves of fog that came with a drastic drop in temperature and millions of tiny water droplets. Most of us called it a day by 4:00 pm.