Month: March 2022


Carmel River Beach color study, 8×10, oil on panel

The Monterey Bay Plein Air Painters were meeting for a paintout at Carmel River Beach. I decided to join them.

Carmel River Beach is tucked away from the normal crowds, and offers views of the Carmel River as it moves through a lagoon and empties into Carmel bay. Expansive views of Point Lobos are in the distance. You might guess it’s also a favorite artists spot!

Upon arrival, we found the parking was closed due to assembling a new coast guard life saving station. So, everyone parked on the nearby streets and had to walk a little further to the beach. I ended up parking a bit away, so instead of painting with the others on the beach, painted along the bluff overlooking the beach. Some painted the quaint Carmel cottages.

It was overcast and foggy the entire morning with occasional slivers of sunlight. I used to hate painting days like this, but have come to love the misty, foggy atmosphere, and some years ago started a ‘misty’ series of paintings I occasionally add to. You can see much of the series here. (Looking back through these pieces, it seems collectors like them also, as most are sold, and one is currently touring in the Yosemite Renaissance show.)

I had commitments later in the day, couldn’t stay long, so did a quick color study. The above was about a 60 minute effort. Although a fairly simple piece, I was pleased with the colors, so consider it a keeper for future reference.

Here are a few more pictures of the day–

And Now, For Something Completely Different

Enjoy this short video, March of the Skunks (be sure to watch with volume up), the second installment of the Critters of Bluffs Dr., Marina, CA.   We don’t have a lot of wildlife around here, but living close to Ft Ord National Monument, we get our share.  Once again, with 6 outdoor cameras, I boiled dozens of clips down to 90 seconds.

BTW, if you missed it, you can see the first installment here.

Moon Over Monterey

Moon Over Monterey, 18×24, oil on canvas, available.

Founded on June 3, 1770, Monterey is one of the oldest cities in California.  Once an abundant fishery, it also attracts writers, painters, and other artists.  Now a tourist destination with the Monterey Bay Aquarium, Cannery Row, and Fisherman’s Wharf, it also hosts the California Roots Music and Arts Festival, and the annual Monterey Jazz Festival.

Fresh off the easel at the Neff Studio, from Del Monte Beach, the moon and downtown Monterey light up the dusk sky overlooking Monterey Bay.

The Mission

Mission San Carlos Borromeo del Río Carmelo, or the Carmel Mission, was the second mission built by Franciscan missionaries in upper California. Built in 1797, it is still in use today for Masses and other services.  Being restored off and on over it’s lifetime, it just recently underwent a major restoration.

The Monterey Bay Plein Air Painters met there yesterday (Wednesday) for a paint out.  About half a dozen showed.  Most paid the entry fee, and went inside to the courtyard to paint.  Here are a few pictures of the day. 

I decided to just do a simple color study of the outside building wall.  

It was fun pushing heavy brush loads of paint around to get the texture of the stucco.  It probably would have been a better composition if the sun had partially shown on the wall creating more light/shadow, but I painted it like it was.  After about an hour, here is what I came up with.

Carmel Mission Color Study, 8×10, oil on panel

Monterey Dunes

Monterey Dunes, 16×20, oil on canvas

We frequently walk by this scene along the trails of Ft Ord Dunes State Park near our home in Marina, CA, and I have talked about it numerous times.  I have painted this immediate area several times, but from an entirely different viewpoint several yards away.  You can see those here and here.  The other day as we embarked on our walk, the sun was hitting the dunes at just the right angle to illuminate the scene, and I determined it just had to be painted.  Fresh off the easel, here is Monterey Dunes.

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