We have continued going out to paint on Mondays. This is despite the poison oak, class-cutting teenagers, and exceedingly friendly dogs (one, named Coltrane, gave me a bear hug). Our group now has three steady people and might continue growing. We tend to meet at trailheads or parking lots, and not stray too far into the park. We actually climb up sometimes steep hills looking for views or just some cool air. It's fun, even if we sometimes have to pass our equipment to each other while we negotiate narrow, slippery cow paths.
These have all been completed on location, with minor corrections done later in the studio. There are two oils and two watercolors. Can you tell which is which? I find that my oil painting influences my watercolor painting, and that my watercolors influence my oils. Watercolor definitely helps me do very defined, quick but finished work when I feel like it, (see the purple field of vetch behind my standing colleague). Oil is fantastic for its luminosity, and you certainly don't feel like anything is "set in stone."
With these paintings, I feel like I am taking advantage of all the green I can get before the summer heat turns everything gold. Green in our Bay Area just doesn't seem to last as long. As Emily Carr so eloquently put it, "As the woods are the same, the trees standing in their places, the rocks and the earth... they are always different too, as lights and shadows and seasons and moods pass through them."