"Distant Weather" is one of several small (5 x 7 inch) paintings I've created recently. The challenge is to convey the big sky of the high prairie I live in. Storms or unsettled, changing weather (like a cold front or a chinook rolling in) are what I find the most interesting, although I do paint "fair weather" skies too. I like to experience weather in "real time" and then paint the memory of it later in the studio.
"Black Butte Memories" is another 5 x 7 inch painting completed this week. Personally, I find this kind of painting more interesting than the one above ("Distant Weather"). Black Butte is a landmark northeast of Lewistown, MT. When portraying large land masses such as this, I "immerse" it in the even larger sky. Even though it's only a few miles away, Black Butte is not visible from my studio as it's mountain neighbors, the Judiths, rise to the immediate west/southwest of it. This painting is based in memories of pleasure drives taken along the gravel road that meanders around the butte's base. The general view is from north looking southward toward the butte (not the view most people in Lewistown are familiar with). It's not a literal recording of the butte but rather a collective sense of the butte as one would see it from changing angles as the road meanders.