Showing posts from April, 2020

Shining Mountains - Colored Pencil Drawing

"Shining Mountains" Colored Pencil It’s late fall as first light seeps across the Great Divide and floods into the Blue River Valley, illuminating a celestial kingdom. Rising out of this divine realm, the Shining Mountains sparkle like jewels and their jagged profile serrates a docile sky. The ethereal incandescence reveals a royal tapestry of woven colors that conveys a spiritual loftiness unique to one of Colorado’s most pristine wilderness areas. The golden peaks are modeled by a jigsaw of sharp-edged shadows of the purest violet-blue. In the field, a barren aspen grove and a few dark trees are scattered remnants of autumn’s last breath. The bronze meadow sits somberly below snow-dusted summits that glimmer with multi-facets of hope. This merciful period of reflection offers precious time to prepare for the difficulties that lay ahead. The melancholy season’s cold air blows with indifference forcing the high country inhabitants to respond with unyielding perseve

White Bergen Peak - Colored Pencil Drawing

"White Bergen Peak" Colored Pencil It is daybreak after a big storm and a white Bergen Peak is like an apparition rising out of an undulating field. Blanketed by fresh snow, the mountain’s bulky form is defined by sharp, gray shadows. A dormant grove of ochre aspen clings to the pale behemoth’s lower slope while dark trees dot the valley floor in the distance. A receding ridge line is set at an angle as it cuts through the middle of such spectacular scenery. Cast as the center of interest, a ponderosa pine creates a striking profile against a backdrop of open air. It’s curving, crimson trunk is topped by a bright green canopy whose beautiful blue shadows melt into the heavens. As the moisture dissipates, an ominous, cobalt-colored sky gradually gives way to sparkling cerulean. A flood of warm sunlight sets the grassland on fire as interlocking shapes of red, yellow and orange sweep across the foreground. The barrage of bad weather is just beginning so it won’t be

Elk Meadow Mornings - Chasing Bluebirds

Chasing bluebirds During this wearisome time, my mornings have been spent in Elk Meadow chasing bluebirds. It is early spring in the foothills so the steep trails are slick and muddy and Bergen Peak’s rocky summit is still laced with everlasting snow. Most of the summer residents are back including the red-winged blackbirds that nest just above waterline in the cattail marsh located at the lower end of the park. The lonely pathway is completely quiet except for the chorus of conspicuous calls made by the elusive inhabitants of this isolated grassland. Nuthatches make a tapping sound as they peck into the bark of a ponderosa pine while a northern flicker claims territory by emitting his distinctive call from the tree’s top. The sweetest song heard in the countryside is the beautiful melody sung by the western meadowlark and that unique warbling sound made by mountain bluebirds in flight attracts my attention to their variable landing zones. This season there has been such a p

Clash of the Seasons - A Skirmish of Bad Weather

Clash of the Seasons While the world is at war with an invisible virus, we have been witness to a dramatic clash between our two most volatile seasons. It is a classic battle between Good and Evil as impatient Spring tries to usher out an unwilling winter. A couple of weeks of warm weather almost wiped out the last pieces of evidence betraying the dark season. Not surprisingly, on the first day of spring, a fierce blizzard destroyed the early vestiges of calm. The next morning was bleak as rising temperatures mingled with moist atmosphere, resulting in a veil of condensed fog. Objects close-up appeared with crystal clarity but as the field of vision expanded, the shapes disintegrated into a screen of nothingness. Wet snow had poured down quietly through the night and accumulated into a heavy pile at least a foot high. The tall pine trees wilted and bowed under the pressure of tremendous weight while smaller ones were smothered in a blanket of flakes. The steely sunrise abs