I had the opportunity to paint outdoors directly this weekend on the Blueridge Parkway/ Appalachian Trail in Virginia, northwest of Roanoke. Strange but true, making good on my MFA 'aka' of Alizarin, I managed to get alizarin crimson oil paint all up the sleeve of my sweatshirt.
It was a perfect day for plein air. My favorite comment/ story from the day: A small family group was looking on at what I was doing. The mama said, look an artist is painting the mountains. The little girl, a 2nd grader, came over and said, "Wow... you can almost paint as good as me". I could hear the mother shudder with embarrassment, but being the good natured, encouraging art teacher, I replied, "Wow, that's great! What grade are you in? Do you like art class?"
I am thinking that if my art heroes strand as a thesis falls through, that the Appalachian Trail could serve as a great thesis. I so love landscape painting! Literally, re-immersing myself in it this weekend was a little heaven on earth!