Art Adventures Southwest Blog

Road Trip - Rock, Forest, Ocean, Sky, Rock

mixed media watercolor and pastel

From Santa Fe, our route west was a diagonal to Idaho and Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve - a 52 mile long volcanic fissure. We camped there amidst the black lava rock and then continued west and north, diving our car into the verticality of Oregon forest. Next, we laid back in mist, sea and sand of the Oregon Coast for eight days. At the end, we headed back towards rock again - auto-ing for over four days on two lane roads. We drove a route through Utah that passes Arches National Monument and got out of the four wheeled vehicle to use our legs. We scrambled and rambled through stunning red rock arches. Arches, like Craters of the Moon, is an area that needs citizen vigilance to maintain its protected and nearly unmarred status.

The art I have been making since I got back to my studio is strictly out of my head and the medium is watercolor and ink pencil. These small, playful pieces have a very serious edge. Most of what we saw on our road trip was inspiring and very scenic; however, we camped under a moon red from fires all over the Northwest. Many forested areas were clear cut.

I play with pigment on water, letting gravity pull the water as I tilt the paper, paper that once was a tree . . . pulp from trees, upheaval, drought, flood and fire. I call up thoughts of climate change. These thoughts enter the marks I make and the colors I chose.