Sunrise on the Potomac

Plein Air painting the misty sunrise on the Potomac in early October

A cold night caused a cloud of mist on the river at dawn as the cold air contacted the warm water.

Flood ravaged vegetation clung to the scoured landscape. It seemed like dawn in primeval jungle in the middle of ancient continent. The bird calls seemed to echo off the mist and give and timelessness to the landscape that made me reflect on my insignificance. If dinosaur or gigantic amphibian shot through landscape it won’t surprise me.

Photo_100109_002.jpgThis photo was taken by my cell camera, the sensor is easily blown out by dynamic lighting conditions.

“The search for a place for inspiration isn’t about finding a physical location it’s finding a state of mind.”



A rock outcropping jetted in the river and I was able to setup and compose a rough grisaille.

Note: This piece of primed hard board soaked much of the oil out of the painting resulting me having to apply lots and lots of wet paint. The Ampersand Gesso board does a much better job at grabbing holding the paint and creating a unified surface.

“Among other things, I shall not scruple to discover a new method of assisting the invention; which though trifling in appearance, may yet be of considerable service in opening the mind and putting it upon the scent of new thoughts, and it is this: if you look at some old wall covered with dirt, or the odd appearance of some streaked stones, you may discover several things like landscapes, battles, clouds, uncommon attitude, draperies, etc. Out of this confused mass of objects the mind will be furnished with abundance of designs and subjects, perfectly new.”

-Leonardo da Vinci

Thank goddess for the National Parks and the fact that realestate has not encroached on this part of the river.