Monthly Archives: March 2014

March 11, 2014: What time does this place close?

We had planned to head out early, around 10a, to make the drive to the LA Arboretum.  The wife and I had been looking forward to this excursion for days, since we had gotten married at the arboretum and couldn’t wait to share the beautiful scenery with the boy.

But then we had to eat breakfast.  And then the boy had to take a nap.  And then we had to get ready, pack a cooler, find a decent pair of jeans.

So, we got on the road at about 1:30p, got to the arboretum at 3p, and promptly asked, “What time do you close tonight?”

The answer: “We close at 5.”

If you’ve been to the arboretum, you know it’s 80 acres of well-maintained nature with paintable views everywhere, but I was looking for the right view, one I could faithfully render in the 2 hours I had till closing.  So, we wandered for about twenty minutes until I found a location that met the need and I set up.

Ryan_atArboretumLooks like the middle of nowhere, right?  The truth is it was about 10 feet away from paths on three sides.

And this is what I came up with:


Moral of the story:  A car ride is the perfect time for babies to nap.

February 22, 2014: Staring at the Sun

On a gorgeous midwinter Sunday, I swung by and picked up Hyeg and we headed out to the old plein air stand-by, Palos Verdes.  It was the first plein air painting I had done since the new year, but more important, it was the first painting with my new hat.  Can a hat come in handy when you’re in the field?  More than I knew…

Turns out the place I had chosen, although beautiful, was also facing due west, which meant that for the last two hours of our session, I was literally staring into the sun.  I had to keep adjusting my hat as the sun was setting, finally settling on a head tilt/low brim combination.

One other note about this momentous day: this was the first time I had ever painted a bougainvillea, and painting a bougainvillea is a lot easier than cleaning up after one.