San Rafael Valley, AZ: Plein Air Sketching

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We are down south in ranch country for a day of plein air sketching. Today our goal is to explore this region and find 2 to 3 spots to sketch. A sketch takes about 20-30 minutes. If a site is memorable enough, we’ll come back for a more in depth study for a longer duration.

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So many choices! San Rafael Valley is first on the list.

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M. Milstead, San Rafael South, pen and colored pencil sketch

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Inge demonstrates an important key to plein air…less is best. Check out this tiny watercolor set, perfect for gathering color and light data on site.

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Julie uses charcoal to demonstrate the tonal quality of the landscape.

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Our second spot is Bog Hole, a prime wildlife viewing area and headwaters of the Santa Cruz River.

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Little dry…

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M. Milstead, Bog Hole Crust, pen and colored pencil sketch

Many a rustic fence and ranch to draw.

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San Rafael Valley is under 2 hours southeast of Tucson just east of Patagonia. From Tucson, travel east on I-10 to HWY 83 Patagonia exit. Drive South on Scenic Highway 83 to Sonoita, turn right on 82 to Patagonia. Just inside Patagonia, turn left on Harshaw Road to San Rafael Valley. Harshaw Road is mostly dirt, off roads are high clearance. Even if you can’t make it to the Valley, this entire route is so scenic, almost any pull out will do for sketching. Take advantage of this wonderful winter weather and low rich light to get out and capture the natural world.

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Opening! Beauty of The Beast: February 1st, 6-8 PM, The Drawing Studio Gallery, Downtown Tucson

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M. Milstead, Rosie Dore, oil on panel, 20×26, 2014

“Rosie Dore”, a play on the peachy pink color of rose dore and my friends’ dog Rosie, started out as just flowers but, as the painting progressed, creatures began to appear beneath the bouquet. This piece reflects upon the great joy our beloved companions  facilitate within us through displays of vulnerability, innocence, and play…and perhaps (just a little) strategic maneuvering.

Please join us for the opening of The Beauty of The Beast, Saturday night, February 1st, 6-8 PM, downtown at The Drawing Studio Gallery. Treats included!

Exhibition Dates: February 1-22.

Gallery Hours, Tuesday-Thursday 10 AM-4 PM, Saturdays, 1-4PM.

Tumamoc Studio: Tuesday, January 28, 1:30-4:30 PM

Welcome to Tumamoc Studio

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We’re doing it again!

Meet me at the gate at the bottom of the Hill at 1:30 PM.

We will carpool to the midway point.

We’ll spend the afternoon au plein air drawing, painting, pasteling: your preference.

This is a free event to promote art on Tumamoc Hill, open to All, no need to register, just show up by 1:30 PM for a ride up the Hill for an afternoon of art.  Easy Peasy! Don’t be late!

Directions from Central Tucson: The entrance to Tumamoc is off of West Anklam Road just south of Saint Mary’s Hospital. Go west on Speedway, turn left on Silverbell Road, cross over Saint Marys Road, pass Saint Mary’s Hospital, next right is West Anklam Road. You will see a line of cars parked on the south side of the road, do not park there! Pull onto the Tumamoc Hill access road and wait at the gate/Shrine House and I will tell you where to park. We need to carpool up the hill.

Please do not drive yourself up the Hill. It is closed to unauthorized car and foot traffic during weekdays.

New! Tumamoc Studio: Tuesday, January 21, 2-5 PM, Tumamoc Hill, AZ

Welcome to Tumamoc Studio.

Meet me at the gate at the bottom of the Hill at 2 PM.

We will carpool to the midway point.

We’ll spend the afternoon au plein air drawing, painting, pasteling: your preference.

This is a free event to promote art on Tumamoc Hill.

Just show up between 2:00 and 2:15 PM for a ride up the Hill for an afternoon of art.  Easy Peasy! Don’t be late!

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Tumamoc Studio and Tumamoc Sketchers exist to facilitate your connection to the natural world through drawing and painting from life.

Please comment to this post with questions or email me, or just show up for our first meeting at the gate at the base of the Hill.