M. Stephen Doherty

M. Stephen Doherty
The editor of Plein Air magazine at work

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Favorite Plein Air Sites. A Friend Share His

Mark Collins of Charlottesville, VA (www.markcollinswatercolors.com) introduced me to one of his favorite outdoor painting sites today, private property at the top of a mountain above Crozet, VA. The temperature was about 15-degrees cooler than in the valley and the flowering trees were about two weeks behind those in lower elevations. There were spectacular views in all directions, but we set up down hill from top of the mountain so there would be less wind, and we both focused on the Blue Ridge Mountains that were dramatically lit by the light breaking through the clouds.

Mark is primarily a watercolorist, but he enjoys plein air painting in oil and often paints on the mountain, especially when a friend travels and asks him to take care of her place. He enjoys being alone with nothing much to do except paint the many views on the mountain, some intimate and some expansive. I'm looking forward to joining him again as the location is inspiring and give me a better sense of how vast and magnificent the landscape is in the Shenandoah Valley.

Mark Collins (left) and me painting on a mountain above Crozet, Virginia

My 16" x 20" oil painting of the Blue Ridge Mountains

1 comment:

  1. Nice painting, Steve. Like how the mountains fade into the sky giving the illusion of distance. Also like that you pointed the bottom right corner (darkened it) to pull the eye into the painting. If I may, the only thing I would suggest would be to pull some of the grays from the sky down to the shadows, since shadows reflect the colors in the sky. That helps unify the painting as well. Or, you can ignore my suggestion and still have a very nice painting :)