Appalachian Trail Painting Series #4: Mountain Stream (Plein Air & Studio)

"Mountain Stream Views at Montreat, NC" 16 x20" Acrylic.
“Mountain Stream Views at Montreat, NC” 16 x20″ Acrylic.

“Creek Views at Montreat, NC” 16 x 20″ Acrylic

On the trail, there are few worries as you romp down the path, but having enough water is one of them.  Rather than thinking in terms of drinking a glass or two a day, as it goes at home, it’s not uncommon to drink 3-5 liters (or 8 liters for some people, right Littlefoot?) in a single day to replace how much you sweat on those hills.   Seeing the crisp, clear water and mossy covered rocks is always a welcome site.   This painting was from a color sketch done in Montreat, NC just after my hike and it looks exactly like the area just before Standing Bear Hostel along Green Corner Rd. .   You can see this if you go to the Montreat Campgrounds at tentsite #13.  I have so many memories of rock hopping and fishing for trout in these cool waters as a kid that a lot of this painting was trying to capture the “feel” of the sunlit spots along the creek, not just an accurate depiction.  My hope is that I can share the love that I have for this place and entice you to go sit on the boulders listening to the sounds of rushing water, birds in the canopy and the smell of fresh renewal everywhere.  This is what you will sense on the Appalachian Trail as well.

Here’s the color sketch:

Here's the set up I had with me on the AT.
This looks like a good spot!
Color sketch of the creek boulders (minus the trees)
Color sketch of the creek boulders (minus the trees)

Here’s a note attach to every post of the Appalachian Trail Painting Series:

The Appalachian Trial Painting Series:

I recently went on a trip to the Appalachian Trail section hiking from the Georgia/North Carolina border up to Hot Springs, NC and shared the adventure in my other blog: The Appalachian Trail, In the Footsteps of an Artist.  I wanted to share what it’s like to be on the trail for 200+ miles, many times with out any contact, deep in nature.   Each day, I jotted down notes in the spare moments and even on the trail as it happened. You’ll read about thoughts (often discoveries), pain, joy, solitude and companionship. You’ll see short video clips, pictures, color sketches and read about all the unexpected events.  Out there, life happens to you so much it’s enough just to adapt and hang on. Mostly, words captured the moments of the day, but in those moment when there are no words, I sought to capture those with painting.  So, please enjoy the adventure of the Appalachian Trail blog first and you’ll feel a much richer sense of the joy behind the moment these painting are about.  Thanks!

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4 thoughts on “Appalachian Trail Painting Series #4: Mountain Stream (Plein Air & Studio)”

  1. Hi! I love your work! I am interested in puchasing a sketch and a painting. My fiance lived in Temple, TX and often went to Dana Peak to ride his mountain bike. He misses it fiercely, and I would like to give him the sketch of the Dana Peak entrance. Also, we now live in TN and visit the Smoky Mountains as much as possible. We kayak the Fontana Dam Lake occasionally, and I adore the 16×20 acrylic painting you did of the lake.

    If either of these works are available and for sale, please contact me.

    1. Thanks! Neither of these are still available, sorry. I go out to Dana Peak all the time and I’ll let ya know if I get in another sketch of that entrance. Shouldn’t be hard, it’s more of a timing thing when the back hills are a blueish tone. That’s usually in the morning when it’s not too sunny out. I don’t think I have the reference sketch I did for the Fontana Dam or I’d just do another one. I’ll keep looking. Thanks so much and I’ll keep in touch.

  2. I keep looking at it, and it really dry, like big area with no interest. I’ll head out and do another sketch when it’s sunny, and maybe add some bikers/walkers…something to make the big open space of the entrance road better. I’ll keep in touch.

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