Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Sensory Overload, Part 1

Wildflowers at Fiscalini Ranch Preserve
 Although there is painting in this post, there's also travel. Hope no one minds.

My husband and I took a quick trip up the coast — we needed to get away, and a Travelzoo deal popped up at just the right time. We love the California Central Coast, and try to visit a couple times each year. I realized that except for a trip in January with some friends, we've always "gone north" in the fall. Our anniversary is in November, and we like to travel as off-season as possible. (One of us really doesn't like traffic or crowds. Well, maybe both of us.) 

April is pretty spectacular in California this year. We hit the peak of the wild mustard season, as well as a lot of wildflowers and just general spring green beauty. I was snapping photos out the car window like crazy. When we realized how gorgeous every hill was, we decided to take a couple of detours to enjoy the ride. 

We worked our way up to Cayucos, and had Smoked Pork Tacos at Ruddell's. So delicious. Here's what Ruddell's looks like in case anyone has forgotten. Aside from the tacos, I think the red trash can with aqua liner is my favorite thing, and it's still there.

Ruddell's, 6x6", oil on board

We got to Cambria early afternoon, and went to Fiscalini Ranch Preserve to scout out painting sites for the next day. It was really windy, but we enjoyed a walk on the Bluff Trail before checking in at the Cambria Pines Lodge. There were many wildflowers blooming along the bluff; so pretty.

Monday was an adventure. We were at Fiscalini early, and the wind was blowing. Predictions were for 20-30 mph, so I decided to just paint a couple of quick studies. I found a slightly-sheltered spot on the Bluff Trail and did a study of the view toward Moonstone Beach.

the light and clouds had changed a lot by the time I finished.
Yes, it was freezing. There were walkers of course, bundled up and asking me if was going to blow away. I would have, but I was hunkered down behind a bush, on my low stool. I quickly packed up and headed for the back trail, thinking to get out of the wind. I found a spot tucked into the bushes and set up my gear again.

Multi-tasking, with a blackbird watching from a bush behind me

This is getting long, so I'll finish the story tomorrow!

Go to Part 2...


  1. I love the shot, Wildflowers at Fiscalini Ranch Preserve! Also, I think your painting travels, along with photos and pics, would make a terrific book.

  2. Well thank you, Jodi. For now, I think the blog will have to do! But I appreciate your confidence in me. We sure packed a lot into three days.


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