Sunday, July 27, 2014

California Dreaming

Evening Meditation - Oil on Canvas Panel - 11x 20
© T Grillo Laird 2014
As much as I love My Florida Gulf Coast home with it's white sand beaches and emerald water, every part of my artist's soul longs for the California Coast. From the first time I saw the coastal region between San Luis Obispo and Monterey just four years ago, I knew I'd found the place I belong. But I'm not  in my twenties anymore and family obligations have piled on together with the years. I can't in good conscience walk away from everyone and do as I please as I might have done not too long ago. So each time I have the opportunity to travel to the coast, I make the most of it. There many painting spots I've set aside for future trips and some that I've managed to make it to. This little spot is one of those.

My view
When I set out from Templeton in mid afternoon, it was 94 degrees. A 20 minute drive over the mountains and through the pass brings you to the coast. I couldn't believe the temperature change at the coast. It was in the mid fifties!
I love the drive along Highway One from Cayucos to just south of Ragged Point. There are plenty of places to pull over to walk along the coast or enjoy the view from a high point. I like this spot near San Simeon because a short climb down the rock face brings you to a narrow rock strewn beach between the water's edge and the steep rock face.Since most people prefer the view from the parking lot above, you can work in relative privacy tucked up against the rock face. It's a peaceful spot.

I had already climbed back up with my painting and some gear when I thought to stop and take this shot. The light was fast disappearing.
I started Evening Meditation on site a little more than a year ago. At that time I was still unable to complete a painting on site before the light changed. I'm happy to say that I've gained that skill since, so I'm really looking forward to my next trip.

After finishing the improvements on my studio this month, I was able to organize my unfinished pieces. I'll be going through them one by one and finishing the promising ones. I'm not worried about ruining these half finished pieces, which gives me a real sense of freedom to see what I can turn them into.  

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