Archive for the ‘State Parks Project’ Category

Mastodon State Historic Site – park 4

November 23, 2016

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Mastodon State Historic Site – park 4

Mastodon State Historic Site–hmmm, what to paint here? Well, the most recognizable icon for the park would’ve been the mastodon skeleton in the museum but…. I wanted to paint “en plein air” and felt since I didn’t have prior permission, it might be a hassle to set up and paint inside the museum–if it would even be allowed. Maybe one of these days I’ll call ahead and see if painting inside would be allowed…if not, I may try to paint from some photos I snapped. It seems like a fun challenge.

So, the next best thing, I thought, would be the bone beds, the site of the archeological digs where the mastodon bones were found. After finding out that you can’t really “see” the bone beds or at least they’re not really marked to protect future finds, I chose to set up along the trail, in a spot where the light really struck me and where you could see some of the ancient rock of the site.

I set up, determined to try and capture what “wowed” me about the view while my mom and aunt went on a hike. As I was painting, I heard what sounded like a bald eagle call. I dismissed it and went about my painting. Wait, I hear it again and more frequently. Finally, I look up to see a pair of bald eagles circling above for a bit before moving on, one following the other. …..and I thought I was “wowed” by the light……

 

To find out more about the historic site, visit their website at:

https://mostateparks.com/park/mastodon-state-historic-site

 

Sandy Creek Covered Bridge – park 3

November 3, 2016

20161029_185800-1Sandy Creek Covered Bridge – park 3

For our second park adventure weekend, mom and I chose to head southeast, talking my mom’s sister into tagging along with us. Our first stop took us to Sandy Creek Covered Bridge. A perfect morning for a stop at this historic, red historic covered bridge. One of only four remaining in the state and our second covered bridge site.

We had a perfect, idyllic fall morning to be there. We arrived with only one other car in the lot, who left shortly after. We walked the grounds a bit as I honed in on the view I wanted to paint. I settled on the view with the white fencing leading into the entrance, set up, and quickly went to work while my mom and aunt walked around and explored the grounds.

It seems that Sandy Creek Covered Bridge is not only eye candy for a painter but it is a sought after location for photogs taking family pictures. As I was finishing my painting, photog after photog showed up along with their families, causing some to wait in line for their turn to set up and take their pictures…..the park was getting busy, the peaceful fall morning was gone, time for us to move on to our next location.   Next up, Mastodon State Historic Site.

http://www.dailypaintworks.com/fineart/veronica-brown/sandy-creek-covered-bridge-en-plein-air/521361

 

https://mostateparks.com/park/sandy-creek-covered-bridge-state-historic-site

Trail of Tears State Park – Park 2

November 2, 2016

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Trail of Tears State Park

We ended our first park adventure, with a stop at the Trail of Tears State Park. A bittersweet place. The views from the overlooks were beautiful while the historic displays and accounts of hardship and death along the forced relocation march-particularly, the delayed crossing of the Mississippi River during winter, was a tragic reminder of one of the saddest times in American history.

While wanting to depict something specific to the park and what had happened in this area in 1838 and 1839, I settled on the view from the overlook. It was peaceful. The view was a perfect place for reflection while I painted.

To learn more about the park:

https://mostateparks.com/park/trail-tears-state-park

To see my “paint the parks” progress:

http://www.dailypaintworks.com/fineart/veronica-brown/trail-of-tears-overlook-en-plein-air/519833

 

Bollinger Mill and Covered Bridge – Park 1

October 31, 2016

Park Number 1-Bollinger Mill and Covered Bridge

So, back to mom and I’s challenge, we officially started our adventure by heading down to Burfordville and Jackson Missouri to visit Bollinger Mill and Covered Bridge and The Trail of Tears State Parks. We couldn’t have picked a better day for it. The colors are starting to show as fall slowly comes to southern Missouri and the temperatures were in the mid 70’s—my idea of perfect! We bollingermill-enpleinairstarted out with a tour of the mill and bridge, while I absorbed my surroundings and tried to decide what I wanted to depict. I finally decided I was going to paint from inside the covered bridge, looking outward, but, it appears there were several photogs taking advantage of the beautiful day and with similar ideas. So, not wanting to be in the way and to make sure I shared the park, I chose to paint the little falls by the mill with the mill and covered bridge in the painting as well—all of the elements that Bollinger Mill is known for. I set up my easel and went to work—on a time clock of sorts, as there were chairs, an arbor, and aisle set up for a wedding to happen that day. I wanted to be finished before they party arrived so I wasn’t in the way or caught in some photographs. All the while I painted, for some reason, I had Billy Idol’s song, “White Wedding” in my head. Funny how songs just pop into your head while you’re painting. I don’t think I sang any of the lyrics out loud but, can’t promise that I didn’t hum part of it while I was “in the zone”.

To find out more about Bollinger Mill:  https://mostateparks.com/park/bollinger-mill-state-historic-site

To view the full gallery of the state park paintings:  http://www.dailypaintworks.com/artists/veronica-brown-5531/artwork?category=State+Parks+Project#/category=State+Parks+Project&mode=search

A new challenge……painting the Missouri State Parks

October 27, 2016

passport-bookI’ve begun a new personal challenge……and I’m taking my mom along with me!

In light of 2016 being the centennial of the Missouri state parks, I’ve decided to try and visit as well as paint en plein air at each park. I hope to finish this challenge in 2 years, but we’ll see. It may take longer (there are 88 places to visit!), but in the end, the real goal is to learn more about the history of our great state and to see some beautiful country along the way. The other driving force behind this goal; my mom confessed to not really visiting many of the parks or really traveling Missouri much—OK, we need to change this! Challenge accepted!

I, myself have visited a lot of the state parks through the years and even painted at a few of them the past couple of years, as I’ve become more involved in painting en plein air. I only became aware of the “passport” book this past summer, after a friend was telling me about these little books that listed all 88 state parks and historic sites in Missouri and encouraged people to get their “passport” stamped at each park they visited. This got me thinking, how fun would it be to paint at each park while mom and I were earning our stamps! How cool would it be to finish the passport with 88 little paintings reminding us of our travels and adventures?!  Again, challenge accepted!

This isn’t a new concept but it is new to me—painting a large series and spreading it out over a year or two. I do not normally have the patience to do more than my annual painting a day for a month challenge. I admire people like artist Billyo O’Donnell, who set a personal challenge of this size and knock it out of the park. He visited and painted each county in Missouri a few years back. He did this over a span of years and the resulting work was amazing!  I really enjoyed reading his book, hearing the stories behind the locations, and seeing the subsequent paintings from his adventure! There is some beautiful and diverse country in Missouri and each place has something that makes it unique! You can check his adventure and more about the book here: http://www.paintingmissouri.com/book/

Now, I’m not claiming to be anywhere near Billyo’s artistic level, nor will the resulting travels end in a book or gallery tour, but, I think the result will be interesting in it’s own right and will carry with it a great sense of achievement and hopefully result in some wonderful memories!  I think it will be fun to see the personal growth through the paintings after they’re all lined up at the end of the adventure–hopefully my skills will be noticeably better!  I think it will also be fun to see what caught my eye on each particular day and what I chose to depict for that park visit.

To follow along on mom and I’s adventures…..stay tuned and I hope you enjoy the journey as much as I’m sure we will!