Sketches And Watercolors From My Trip To Wyoming

 

Pronghorn from taxidermy mount
Pronghorn; water soluble colored pencils from taxidermy mount

I’m back home now from my two week trip to Wyoming, where I spent three great days in Yellowstone National Park, a day and a half in Jackson Hole and five days at the Susan K. Black Foundation Workshop (SKB).

I painted and sketched along the way and at the workshop, trying out a variety of combinations of paper and water media. Here’s an album of some of my pieces, all done on location:

Goose Lake sunset
Goose Lake sunset, done is about 15 minutes; watercolor
Goose Lake
Goose Lake mountain and sunset; watercolor
Bison
Bison; pencil and watercolor
Bison in the Lamar Valley, Yellowstone
Bison in the Lamar Valley, Yellowstone; watercolor
Yellowstone trees; watercolor
Yellowstone trees; watercolor

Since I don’t really paint North American wildlife anymore, I found it liberating to not worry about getting “the shot”, although I ended up with lots of great photos, but instead to focus on sketching the live bison.

Bison sketches; Sakura Micron .01 pen
Bison sketches; Sakura Micron .01 pen
Cottonwoods and a snowy morning, the Lamar Valley, Yellowstone
Cottonwoods and a snowy morning, the Lamar Valley, Yellowstone; watercolor

The third day I was in Yellowstone it snowed in the morning. I drove out to the Lamar Valley and set up my watercolors on the passenger seat of our VW Eurovan camper, then just looked out the windows to do these three studies.

Lamar Valley snow and bison; watercolor
Lamar Valley snow and bison; watercolor

There’s a huge mountainous cliff on the east side of the park that is known as a place to spot mountain goats. And, sure enough, I spotted this nanny and kid with my binoculars. I got out my spotting scope (a Leica Televid) and managed these two quick pen sketches before she and the youngster got up and moved off out of sight.  Then it was back to bison.

Mountain goat nanny and kid; bison; Sakura Micron .01 pen
Mountain goat nanny and kid; bison; Sakura Micron .01 pen

One of the locations at the SKB workshop was a ranch that has been in the same family for over 100 years. Hope to be able to go there again next year.

Cottonwoods, Finley Ranch; watercolor
Cottonwoods, Finley Ranch; watercolor
Cattle skulls
Cattle skulls, Finley Ranch; Precise V5 pen and Koi water brush

Next week I’ll share photos and stories from the workshop.

3 Great Days at Yellowstone National Park Last Week

Saw a lot of these huge bull bison in the park
Saw a lot of these huge bull bison in the park.

I’m now in Dubois, Wyoming at the Susan K. Black Foundation Workshop and having a inspiring time, chatting, networking and painting with old and new friends and colleagues. I’ll be posting more about that next week, but this time I’d thought I’d share some of the photos I took at Yellowstone National Park last week, starting with the big guy at the top. I never get tired of seeing these huge bulls.

One of the famous Yellowstone "bison jams".
One of the famous Yellowstone “bison jams”. Back-ups can be very long, but the animals have the right of way.
The third day I was there a snowstorm came through I was in the area known at "Little America", just to the west of the Lamar Valley, when, right next to a pullout in a hollow was this small group of bison, hunkered down and waiting it out.
The third day I was there a snowstorm came through I was in the area known at “Little America”, just to the west of the Lamar Valley, when, right next to a pullout in a hollow was this small group of bison, hunkered down and waiting it out.
Young bison calf born very late, but I've been told even these little ones are tough enough to survive the winters.
Young bison calf born very late, but I’ve been told even these little ones are tough enough to survive the winters.
The Lamar Valley is known as the "Serengeti of North America" because it's where you can see scenes like this....a very big herd of bison moving through
The Lamar Valley is known as the “Serengeti of North America” because it’s where you can see scenes like this….a very big herd of bison moving through with pronghorn antelope closer to where I was. And a single male pronghorn closer yet.
Yellowstone scenery.
Yellowstone scenery.
On my way out of the park, I spotted this pair of trumpeter swans floating on the misty river.
On my way out of the park, I spotted this pair of trumpeter swans floating on the misty river.