Election Day

I awoke to the pitter-patter of rain this election day morning.  It rained until about 9:00 AM, then cleared off to partly cloudy skies.  As I headed out to the polling place around ten o’clock, the clearing skies were wonderful.  We were getting the billowing cumulus clouds and fresh sky which is only common here after a winter storm.

I couldn’t resist, so after casting my ballot, I went home, ate lunch, and then headed out to the hills right behind my home to paint the wonderful sky before it was gone.  I took two 6×8 canvas boards, one toned with my usual Transparent Iron Oxide (somewhat like a Burnt Sienna), and the other just the white canvas.  I wanted to see how much the toned colors would come through on the sky.

I drove up one of the roads behind my house.  It was a wonderful, crisp and only slightly breezy day—


I first painted towards San Jose and Silicon Valley with the sky as the center of interest.  Using the white canvas panel, I spent about 30 minutes on it–

san jose donald neff

I then turned my easel around the exact opposite direction and painted the hills behind me with the clouds swirling around the tops.  Below is the second painting, using the toned panel.  Again I spent about 30 minutes on it as I wanted to capture the sky as quickly as possible.

san jose donald neff

I think I will stick with the toned panel for sky paintings, as the warmth can show through.  Below is a picture of my easel by the car, which I had to take with my cell phone as the camera battery had just died.


As I write this, I am not sure who will win the election.  Both my paintings, although very simple in composition, turned out to be ‘keepers’ so I walked away with two winners!!

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