Aspen At Turkey Creek is an 8×10″ plein air oil painting, fresh off the easel. My wife Kathy and I are on a painting trip in Southern Colorado. We got the timing perfect for this trip because the Aspen are at their peak fall colors this week. This little 8×10″ was painted in the rain. I love the cloudy days because the color is much purer, but the rain storms make for a challenge when it comes to plein air painting. The rain got so strong at one point during this painting that I actually moved my easel inside of the van for awhile and painted from there.
Colorado Aspen: Quakies
When I first moved to Colorado, I quickly found out that those who are native to the mountains of Colorado refer to the Aspen trees as “Quakies”. Why? Because the leaves are always quaking in the mountain breeze. The sound they make is unmistakable and quickly became a sound that I love! This week I will be painting the beautiful fall colors of the Colorado Quakies in the San Juan mountains.
Did you know that Aspen trees are the largest living organism on the planet? It’s because they grow in clones, sprouting up trees from their roots. So as you walk through a grove of Aspen you are not actually walking through a grove of individual trees, they are actually one big organism sharing the same root system. That’s one reason you can see a stand of aspen all changing color at the same time, while only a few hundred yards away another stand have not changed.
The Aspen tree is not a tree for all locations. They are a high altitude tree. Unfortunately, since I live in the desert South West, my yard has palm trees rather than Aspen trees. However, I have to say that sitting under my palm trees during the winter months when the Aspen in Colorado are barren of leaves and covered in snow is pretty nice!
San Juan Mountains
My wife and I love the San Juan mountains. They are the largest mountain range in Colorado area, very rugged, and covered with Aspen trees. Right now as I write this blog, I am an artist in paradise! I’m hoping for a few sunny days to paint outside of the van and I will post my paintings from this trip daily.