Something the weatherman said got me thinking Tuesday night. He was saying a band of snow would fall between 10 am and noon Wednesday morning. It would be an opportunity to paint outdoors with snow on the ground. Ha. Could I rouse myself and go paint IN THE SNOW? What could that be like? I had read of others doing that. I asked the Lord as I lay in bed: if I was supposed to do this, would he wake me up in time, give me the energy to get around. Closing the whispers in Jesus' name. He's done this before. Leaving it in His hands, drifting off to sleep.
Before the alarm sounded I was up dressing, packed the hot water thermos, pajamas under jeans, t-shirt layers, two long-sleeved shirts, moving the easel from the Ford pickup to the Lumina car. I trusted the traction of the car better than the truck when it came to driving on snow, panels ready, even took the 30 by 40 canvas just in case. Packed the sandwich and carrots, ate the yogurt and drank the morning cocoa.
Two minutes. Putting out acrylic tube paint and storing back in my coat.
One minute. Location I chose to paint, next.
Normally tube acrylic paint dries quickly, as soon as it is brushed on the panel. At 20 degrees the paint does not dry at all. It remains moist. The portion I put down slid when I tried to add another layer with the brush. What???? My mind raced. This was not good. What could I do? I stopped. Took a breath. If it was at all possible I wanted to make this work. How??
Six minutes. Double click on images to enlarge. I put hot water from the thermos in my water bucket. This gave me water to mix paints with. Barely dabbing was the answer.
(the flecks on the video remind me that the Lord who got me up early was with me. The experiment progressed and concluded well. I was amazed how well it looked when it was all done ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !)
(Later I thought about the steps the made this composition work. My wife the elementary art teacher told me she saw depth in the work. She was right, it was there. I don't recall how it got there.)
When I was done I stepped back to look at the whole thing. Wow! I laid the wet panel flat in the car. With the car heater on the wet layers built dried.
Bluff Creek No. 2 Snow,
16 x 20 inch cradled panel,
Feb 10, 2016
The snow shower was brief. It had stopped. I moved the equipment and easel to the second location and set out a ready panel, next.
The scene had snow laying on the top of logs.
Six minutes. Painting second scene.
Bluff Creek No.3 Snow,
11.75 by 11.75 inch cradled panel
Feb 10, 2016
That second work began at 12:15 pm and ended at 1:40 pm.
By the time I left the temperature had climbed, there was melted snow on highway, and residual snow on the gravel road. I thanked the Lord for his kindness.
That was on February 10th, 2016.