Thursday, June 19, 2014

Painting at Mountain Farm

Plein air painting is always an adventure and yesterday was no exception.  The weather was sunny and warm when we met at Mountain Farm.  There were 16 artists painting and sketching in various mediums - oils, watercolors, pastels, pencils and pens.  

Mountain Farm is located in Celo, NC, and raises goats and lavender.  It has a beautiful view of the Black Mountains.  Several of us painted near the lavender labrinth, which is located on the high point of the farm.  When we began, there wasn't much breeze, but before too long, the wind picked up.  Umbrellas and canvases went flying.  And have you ever tried to paint goats?  They aren't the best at staying in the scene!  

Laurel Lovrek painted this lovely pastel painting.....

Lavender Ladies
5" x 7" - pastel

Thanks for stopping by.....

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Painting again.....

Spring has officially arrived.  That means for those of us fair weather plein air painters, it is time to get outside to paint.  

Today, Laurel Lovrek and I painted scenes of the South Toe River from Carolina Hemlocks.  The weather was nearly perfect - not hot and not cold.  A great day to start our plein air season.

Here is a photo of my painting from today: 

South Toe River at Carolina Hemlocks
artist: susan garriques
6" x 8", oil on canvas board

And below is the painting that Laurel started.  She says " This is a shrub that caught my eye, because it flows with the river.  The pastel is large for plein air, 9 x 12, so this is unfinished."

painting in progress
Artist: Laurel Lovrek
9" x 12", pastel

It felt so good to be outside today!  Where we were painting today, there isn't any cell phone reception.  It is a great place to escape from the "world", immerse oneself in nature, and just paint.  

Thanks so much for stopping by!


Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Painting Again....

A few members of the Toe River Valley Plein Air Painters painted today in Green Mountain, NC, at the Fairview Cemetery.  The views from there are all long-range and there are paintings in every direction.  We'll definitely be back!  

Here are some photos from today: 

View from Fairview Cemetery in Green Mountain
View from Fairview Cemetary in Green Mountain

We'd love to have you join us next time we paint.  If you are interested, you'll find our events posted at  

Thanks so much for stopping by! 

Toe River Valley Plein Air Painter

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Roan Mountain Paint Out

Up on the top of Roan Mountain is the world's largest natural rhododendron garden.  Eight artists were up there today painting.  The weather was perfect - not too hot - not too cold - no wind to speak of.  Some sun followed by cloudy skies.  The mildest day I've ever spent on the Roan.  

The blossoms are not in full bloom yet - they were just beginning to open at the Cloudland Hotel site.  If you've been thinking about making a trip up that way, it's definitely not too late.

Here are some photos of our day.....  (and.. I've asked for more photos from the artists, so be sure to check back later for more photos)

Arlene Daniel painting at the Cloudland Site, Roan Mountain

Laurel Lovrek, Sandra Gates and Kathleen Turczyn painting at the Cloudland Hotel Site, Roan Mt.

Katherine McCarty, Susan Garriques and Kathleen Turczyn painting at the Cloudland Hotel Site

Painting by Sandra Gates

Painting by Susan Garriques

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Painting After the Floods

Three Toe River Valley Plein Air Painters ventured outside today to paint along the Cane River just west of Burnsville in Yancey County.  There has been significant rainfall the past several days and there was evidence that the river had come up at least 2 feet.  Where we were standing to paint had very obviously been underwater recently.  

But... today the weather was dry and we were painting.  The sky changed from blue with white puffy clouds, to no blue and huge dark clouds within an hour, and then back to blue again.  Typical mountain weather.

Here are some photos from today's adventure....

Cane River, May 9, 2013

Sandra Gates

Scott Boyle

My very green painting.

It was wonderful to be able to get outside and paint today.  With all the rain, everything is suddenly turning green and I've been feeling like I'm breathing green.  My painting certainly conveys those feelings!  

Thanks for reading.  We'd love to have you come join us next time.  You'll find announcements of our paint outs on the events section of (North Carolina Plein Air Painters).

Paint on!

Friday, April 12, 2013

Painting in Celo

Five painters gathered this afternoon to paint in Celo, NC.  Originally we had planned to paint along the river, but river access was difficult where we were hoping to paint.  Fortunately, we were very near another artist's studio that has nice views.  We spread out and all painted different scenes.  The South Toe River, where we originally planned to paint, is just across the road from the studio.  That meant that painting the river was still an option.  

Last night, wicked storms moved through the mountains, leaving more than an inch of rain in its path.  The river was high and moving fast.  It caught my attention as we drove by, so I chose to paint there.  I've painted moving water before, but not moving as fast as this water was.  About three-quarters of the way through my painting, I was thinking maybe it would have been much more simple to paint something that held still!  

Here is a photo of my painting (I totally forgot to take a photo of it at the scene) and then more photos of our group.  

oil painting by susan garriques

oil painting in progress by Sandra Gates

oil painting in progress by Nancy Wood

Katherine hard at work

oil painting by Kathleen Turczyn

Kathleen at work

Thanks so much for taking time to read our blog and look at our paintings. If you are an artist and would like to paint with us, just send me an email and I'll get you on our list.

Paint first!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Sunday, April 6th

We've finally had a break in the weather here in the mountains and 4 of the Toe River Valley Plein Air Painters met along side the Cane River to paint yesterday.  It was a perfect afternoon for painting.  

Toe River Valley Plein Air Painters painting along Cane River

Maggie - the ever faithful painting hound
oil painting by Sandra Gates

watercolor (in progress) by Judy Larkins
oil painting in progress by Nancy Wood

oil painting by Susan Garriques

oil painting in progress by Sandra Gates
Thans for stopping by.  Be sure to send Susan and email if you'd like to join us one day for painting!