Original, 11″ x 15”, watercolor on 140 lb 100% cotton Saunders’ St. Cuthbert’s Mill paper. Unframed.
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I wanted to capture the solitary peacefulness of this scene of the covered bridge at Tannery Hill. The footprints were all mine, from tracking in my gear. I didn’t see a soul the whole time. The only sound was that creek, the birds, and the dripping snow. I felt the reason why, it was absolutely frigid.
But, being out there, fighting to capture something beautiful is precisely why I paint. I want to be in those quiet, unsung places, working to capture what I see.
It was 27 degrees with that incredibly cutting New England humidity. The sun was waning. Snow turned to drizzle as I fought the wind. I lasted 1.5 hours and kept my palette warm with a DIY warm pack cradled in aluminum foil. My toes slowly stiffened into the cold. But I came home with a plein air study. Thate’s the first five pictures.
That plein air study formed the field notes for this studio piece. It’s pretty amazing to paint inside all warm and protected and still remember. The cold seeping into my feet, the pines drip, dripped, the stream rushed. And I was the only human to observe. God’s ways are just like this, moving quietly, gently, steadily into beauty regardless of the audience.
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