There were a couple really nice days during the last week of February. Temperatures were in the 50's and breezes, if there were any, were mild. Songbirds were not only singing more, but also different kinds of songs. In marshy ranch land and near the lake western chorus frogs added their voices to the approach of spring. Ducks and geese were staking out their favorite spots in marsh puddles or along the river. The trumpet calls of sandhill cranes could be heard across the fields. As I painted the scene shown above, I heard the high-pitched staccato call of a bald eagle - not a sign of spring, but always cool to hear. I even had to pick a couple bugs out of my paint - a sure sign the weather's getting warmer.
5" x 7" Oil on Panel
These were perfect days to go outside with the pochade boxes, so I headed for the river trail west of town. Wednesday the 8x10 pochade box went with me. The next day was the little 5x7's turn. If I only painted indoors in a studio, I'd play hooky on days like these. But, for me, painting and the outdoors fit together wonderfully so there's no need to choose between painting and enjoying an early springlike day. Why not do both?