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Marshall Road, White Ranch, Studio Thoughts

Parked on a gravel pullout halfway down Marshall Road, listening to the NPR coverage of the inauguration. I liked the full panorama from this vantage and made a quick painting of the skyline from Eldorado Canyon to Bear Peak. Not crazy about the results and not ready to move on so I made a second painting looking out the driver side window. A cottonwood with two twisting leaders set against the horizontal expanse of warm buff grass poking through the snow. The sunlight was wan, clouds flat, gray and minimal. It fit the day's mood better than the mountain view. Malaise. The other day on my way back from White Ranch I found a pullout facing the sun and a snowy hillside scattered with pines. The trees were dark and lively, their mirrored shadows a brilliant blue, that blue-violet that I'm still searching for on the palette. Pthalo red shade? Some sort of cobalt mixture? Anyway, I felt good about the energy and rhythm of the marks but the space didn't quite work.

Last note for today is the 24/7 tension in my mind to get going on these studio canvases. Starting to lose my patience. I need the right image, the right point of reference. Or do I? I know the direction, the feeling, the material and the effort required. I'm not in the habit of putting in the hours it will require but I know once I start that I will fall into that habit. It's just the image. I'm 1-2 days of prep away from getting that image. I feel like I need a full day of photographing and walking to capture the image. But is this an excuse? What don't I already have? What I DO have is a set of images and ideas for smaller works, that could be started tonight should I so choose.