"Mary's Trail at Laguna Coast Wilderness Park"
8" x 10", Oil on Canvas Board
I could not resist contributing to Alice Thompson's latest art challenge, "The Secret Garden." Alice asked, "Do you have a secret garden? Do you retreat to a pond, park, tree or nursery? Do you have a small patch of earth to cultivate? If so I’d like for you to paint that and tell us about it."
The challenge appealed to all my interests, gardening, landscape architecture, flowers, browsing nurseries, Spring, parks, and botanical gardens. A recent spring visit to Descanso Garden, past visits to Filoli, our community greenbelts, flowers in our garden, and even parks I've had a hand in designing yielded a multitude of images from which to choose. However, I finally decided I needed to capture a vignette of the magnificent abundance of wild flowers and lush native growth we are currently experiencing in southern California.
The heavy winter rains brought forth an incredible array of colors and textures in Laguna Coast Wilderness Park. The trail and scenery that inspired my painting is near the Nix Center at Little Sycamore Canyon.
This past spectacularly clear Monday I completed most of the painting "en plein aire." I further refined it, Thursday, in Victoria Templeton's Painters' Connection class. Today, Friday, my wife and I had a very pleasant and easy hike down the trail.