* Carmen Beecher * Cindy Michaud * Carol Schiff * Denette Schweikert * Donna Vines * Mary Warnick * Kathy Garvey *Fay Picardi * Jean Thomas

Sunday, October 31, 2010

My Happy Place, 5x7

After our first cold day in North Carolina, the weather got better and better. We were drawn to the river, where there was beauty at every turn. Donna took this picture of me comfortably ensconced on a rock, painting happily. Thanks to Cindy, I had a very appropriate-looking hat.
posted by Carmen

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Road to NoWhere

This painting makes me very cold...it was the first day out for plein air and while the sun was bright and beautiful there was a wicked wind out that whipped around this corner and froze my fingers as I tried to paint.  Standing in one place with an easel does not burn very many calories and the longer I stood, the colder I got!  Finally, when I had enough of the backlighting down and the shadow patterns outlined I cried "uncle" and packed it in.  Had to finish it in the studio where I warmed up with an appropriate beverage.  This road really leads to a nice deadend and is perfect for early morning dog-walking.  It's 7 x 5 in oil. 
Cindy Michaud      http://www.cindymichaud.com/

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Old Schulls Mill Road, NC

Painting en plein air always sounds so romantic: surrounded by nature, painting the scenery.  While that is not always the case, this 6 x 8 painting is a result from one of those gorgeous, perfect, fall days in the most lovely spot surrounded by fellow painters (and a fly fisherman or two).  We camped out just off of Old Schulls Mill Road next to the Watagua River in Foscoe, NC and painted to our hearts content.
I came home to add a touch or two...but not many, part of the joy of outdoor painting is capturing the elements allaprima (all in one take) and leaving evidence of the time fleeting.  Not overworking is something I am constantly working on.  The time riverside flew by and when someone noticed we had almost worked through our lunch break we were all surprised. 

I can almost feel the cooler fall temps looking at this piece...makes me want to travel the bend in the road and see where it takes me.

Cindy Michaud

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Seven Devils, North Carolina

This photo comes with a story, of course. We were on a mountaintop in the town of Seven Devils, staying in Cindy's condo. The night we arrived she had a strange and convoluted dream in which she had many problems, and in the dream her mother comforted her by saying, "Don't worry, dear. You have good Carmen." So, for the week, I was Good Carmen, hence the halo.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Freezing Cold and Oh So Happy

My first painting from the Pieces of 8 retreat in North Carolina was of Denette, sitting there in the wind, just as cold as I was, painting away. In the background is Grandfather Mountain, the beautiful view from Cindy's place. Speaking of Cindy, I cannot thank her enough for her hospitality and generosity. This annual week of recharging our batteries is always fun, always productive, and the camaraderie is the best part. My face hurts from laughing!
Posted by Carmen

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

New Pieces

Welcome to Kathy Garvey and Phillis Holland....brand new pieces...of 8!
Pictured here in Linville, NC on the annual Pieces Plein Aire Retreat they are busy getting inducted in the rules and rituals of the esteemed painting gang.

Look forward to new work, new ideas and new enthusiam brought on by these gals...as well as a formal intro including their "creds' soon.

Right now, they (and we) are too busy having a wine time, oops, I mean a fine time in the mountains of Seven (now eight) Devils, NC.

The Pieces of Eight
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