Painting en Plein Aire

I often talk about getting out in nature, but here is a new spin, take along some drawing paper and felt pens (easier than paints and an easel) and let the Monet come out in you. 

Last weekend, a beautiful spring day we headed up to the hills in west Marin overlooking Pt Reyes National seashore. Another beautiful place, but often shrouded in fog and a bit too shaded for the sun we were seeking. Stopping on the side of the road we hiked on up the Bolinas Ridge Trail with a backpack stuffed with a picnic, some blank watercolor cards and felt pens.

Meandering up the hill we stopped to talk to the cows and fondle over the young calves that they were protecting from us hikers. In awe of the beauty that surrounded them day after day, the sunshine and lush green grass we thought, "How good it is to be a cow in Marin." 

Further up the hill we plopped down on a large boulder and promptly arranged the picnic of sandwiches, chips, clementines, and water. Having just come out of 3 months of rain and fog, the hills were beaming with color from the green grass to the yellow corn flowers and wild blue irises. The sky was as clear as it is in Provence (a rarity for this area) and so it was ever so more beautiful and surprising. 

Jean, Zoe and I found our own directions and promptly started to draw our view of what we were seeing; a landscape of the hills, a view of Pt Reyes and the inlet waterway; and a flower.  An hour later we packed it up and moved on down the mountain feeling a little like Monet in the gardens of Giverney, but on a much larger scale. 

It doesn't take much, but it sure makes for a great day!