Cheerful and Colorful Paintings

Cheerful and Colorful Paintings in Oil, Acrylic, Mixed Media and Collage

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Kathleen Elsey Workshop 2, Day 1 ~ Sonoma CA ~ Plein Air ~ by Texas Daily Painter Nancy Standlee

"Oak Hill Farms"
11x14, acrylic on board

 Nancy Plein Air Painting in Sonoma CA

 Kathleen Elsey

During the 4 day workshop with Kathleen Elsey in April in Santa Barbara, I knew I would like to take another one from her, especially in Sonoma. I'm experimenting with plein air again after the Santa Fe workshop with Niki Gulley. Years and years ago I lived in California for a short time but had never made it to the wine country and Sonoma is a wine and travel destination with over 17 miles of beautiful pastoral scenes and the birthplace of the CA wine industry. So it made for a great choice for a plein air experience, Santa Fe and Sonoma. I might could even make a painting with such beautiful scenery choices in a 3 day workshop plein air in Sonoma.
On Sunday morning after a get acquainted meeting with 13 other students,  Kathleen gave us our driving directions and we had a delightful day of painting at Oak Hill Farms. I will post a slide show from the day at a later post. It was a perfect day, perfect weather, perfect companions, and perfect instructor, perfect location. 
Why am I making such a point of this being worth the trip? At times I really doubted my sanity at trying to make this trip with one broken left foot in a big black blinged out boot, my 76th birthday looming this month, and the amount of equipment I would have to bring. I'll show the supplies I chose in another blog post also. First obstacle there was an American gate change at DFW from A15 to where I arrived to C36, about 20 miles away (in one broken foot miles). What I thought would be a leisurely DFW breakfast turned into no breakfast with a mad dash on the handicap tram to reach my gate just as boarding began. I chose to fly into Sacramento and make the 70 or so mile drive to Sonoma with the first stop as soon as possible at a Denny's for eggs and toast the middle of the afternoon. Sacramento airport has just gotten a big new face lift and there is quite a hike from unloading to baggage, with a ride on a little bullet train, down a glass elevator to baggage but American had a wheelchair waiting as I hobbled off the plane. It was amusing as the strong young man picked up an older gentlemen and I to wheel to our destination (one in each hand) and he kept trying to give the other passenger one of my two bags. I was loaded down with a big back pack and a 22" wheeled backpack and they were both stacked in my lap and every time the angel pushing man would try to share my load the man would say "I don't know her". I finally got my point across these were indeed my two bags, the other wheel chair person and I were not acquainted and just load them up in my lap and we'll go. Fortunately the car rental bus was right outside baggage claim and with more good strong men to hoist heavy bags. Then it was a matter of finding my car, loading it up, turning on the gps, finding some breakfast on the way, finding the motel and questioning still if I've made the right decision. On Sunday painting with new friends out on the Oak Hill Farm, Yes.. it was worth the trip. What a beautiful day. 

To see more of Kathleen's work and workshop dates HERE is the link to her website.

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Connie Michael said...

I'm sure glad you feel that way after all you went through to get there. Your painting is beautiful!

Suzy Pal Powell said...

very nice Nancy! looks like a lot of fun to me!

Nancy Standlee said...

Connie and could be More FUN if both of you were in my motel room with me loading up our gear to go paint.

Eva said...

Lovely painting. You are amazing! 76???? Plus flying, and driving with a broken left foot!!! I can't go to the store without complaining about my legs and back hurting and I'm 74.

Karen said...

Hooray, I found your blog again! You are a very dedicated blogger, I'm impressed. I'm the gal from the Sonoma workshop who lives in Arizona. When you have a chance, please check out my blog at It's geared toward elementary art educators, but you can get an idea of what I do and see some of my students.
It was a pleasure and an inspiration to meet you, Nancy.
Karen Knorowski

Nancy Standlee said...

Oh, Karen, thanks for posting a comment and so great to meet you. I'll check out your blog tomorrow and hope to paint with you again someday.