I spent a great morning painting last week in western Yolo County, California.
The Yolo County Arts Commission has a program it calls Art & Ag: they work with farmers to bring painters to their farms. Once a month, painters can come to a farm to paint. It’s a great program, because it lets us paint on private property we otherwise wouldn’t get to see. I, for one, really appreciate the opportunity. I’ve lived in California most of my life, and in Sacramento most of that time, and I’ve been to places with Art & Ag that I’ve never been to before. This is the Scott Farm west of Woodland. Those are the coast mountains in the distance, near Lake Berryessa. The morning was pleasantly cool, and the barn provided lots of shade to work in.
What interested me with this scene was the juxtaposition of the farmhouse and the wind turbine in the distance (it’s in front of the mountains, almost in the center of the shot, below). A few minutes later, some cows wandered in front of us, in that pasture in front of the green (olive trees?). Instantly, this plein air study became a sketch for a larger painting, of the cows and the wind turbine. Agrarian and high tech. I’ll post an image when I get it finished!