Friday, June 24, 2016

Plein Air painting in the Rocky Mountains

I would like to thank Sharon Rusch Shaver, a talented painter and adventure artist, for giving me the motivation to paint outdoors in the beautiful Rocky Mountains.  I have never felt so inspired and joyful. She taught me and several artists a different way to look at the mountains and the outdoors. She taught us to capture the mountains and scenery on a canvas with oil paints. The challenge -- which I embraced -- was to get a painting done in approximately two hours, and then, just, step away! For me, I would lay down the brush, and say, "Done," I'm out." What I have on the canvas, it is what I saw -- my interpretation and style. I have a painting style. How thrilling! Each of us had a unique style. We helped and motivated each other. 

Plein Air painting is challenging! Just as she said it would be. Sharon diligently corralled the team of painters each morning (after coffee) and hustled us out to a beautiful site where we set up our easels and hunkered down and painted. One day it rained. The wind blew so hard another day, Sharon's painting blew off its easel and had to be fished out of a lake. 

I have never felt such a feeling of calm and excitement at the same time! It takes courage to go forth and live my own dream in spite of life's challenges. It takes strength to carry all the supplies, paints, tripod, art box and back pack through a marsh, too. Thanks Sharon and thanks to Dan, her "Sherpa" husband, for inspiring me to live large and live joyfully.

Visit Sharon and become an Adventure Artist at

Oil paintings from the Rocky Mountains, Colorado, by Carol Labashosky

This last piece is done in oil pastels. I just couldn't get enough and stayed in the Rocky Mountains another day.