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Monday, February 23, 2015

Winter Plein Air in Mineral Point

A brave group of 19 artists made history in Wisconsin for the first ever Winter Plein Air event in Mineral Point.  Was it cold?  You bet.  But we all endured, had fun and explored the town and surrounding countryside to find so much artistic inspiration. 
My first day out began at Jailhouse Alley as a fresh coat of snow had fallen the night before and the muted landscape just called out to me. 
"Good Morning Mineral Point" set up
Then I quickly packed up to meet beef farmer Steve as he told me the cattle are fed around 10 a.m.  At this point in the morning, the winds really began whipping across the hilly fields and the conditions got pretty tough.  I managed to keep my easel upright and took a few breaks in my car to get out of the wind.  I really enjoyed watching Steve portion out the hay in a beautiful, artistic pattern across the hilltop.  Another studio painting is anxiously awaiting further exploration of this subject and their lovely farm.
"Angus Brunch Bunch" set up
Steve feeding the cattle
That afternoon I explored another building on Steve's homestead farm, an amazing old barn.  Once again, the snow was drifting with winds whipping, but I enjoyed painting this old structure.  This painting too will be used for a studio piece in the very near future. 
A big part of these events is the time spent with fellow artists.  A bunch of us stayed at the historic Walker House, a hotel built in 1836!!!  And unlike summer events where some artists paint throughout the night doing nocturnes, we actually had time to have dinner together after the sun went down around 5 p.m. 
The Walker House Hotel, built 1836
My mornings in Mineral Point began before sunrise enjoying a yummy breakfast at The Red Rooster.  I always enjoy the conversations and even had a local man purchase my breakfast one day!  What a treat, thanks Brad. 
The fun wallpaper at The Red Rooster
That morning I painted something that caught my eye the day before on Shake Rag Alley.  This crazy tree was still covered with snow and I was drawn to the complexity of the branches against the simplicity of the historic buildings of Pendarvis.  A world of contrasts.
Thank you to all the event organizers and the people of Mineral Point who always welcome the artists....see you in summer when it's about 80 degrees warmer!


Sunday, February 1, 2015

Featured artist in Outdoor Painter

This past week, I was very humbled and honored to be the featured artist in Outdoor Painter magazine.  The focus was my winter plein air work and how that translates into winter studio paintings.  You can read all about it on the link below.