“Before the Storm”, Open Acrylic on Canvas, 12″ x 24″
I was at the Black Mountains overlook on the Blue Ridge Parkway, milepost 342.2. My intention was to paint a sunset, so I set up around 5pm and started blocking in the shapes using darker than normal midtones anticipating sundown. When plein air painting, I paint for three hours and stop. Two hours in with storm clouds building it was obvious that a colorful sunset was not in the cards. Oh well . . .
The elevation at this site is close to 6000 ft. The grasses and underbrush which were brightly colored just two weeks ago have died back. The temperature was in the forties while painting even though the sky was clear and the sun was out. The wind made it feel much colder. At 6000 ft., winter comes early. Every day is an adventure.
It was a bright day despite the haze that spent the day with me while painting. I finished as the clouds rolled in, it was a good day. There are different theories as to why it is called “Graveyard Fields” but the one I like, is that after a fire some hundred years ago, that the burnt tree stumps on the barren meadow looked like grave stones. It doesn’t look like a graveyard now, now it just looks beautiful.
Looking Glass Rock can be seen in the gap. It by itself from a different overlook will be a future painting.