These rocks are near marker 22 on the Wormhole Loop in Carolina Northwoods Forest in Chapel Hill. They caught my eye during a run and came to mind for the next painting. A smooth slope, from bikers and runners, is worn into the side closest to the viewer. Over 22 more years, I can make paintings for each marker along the trail.
This is another spot at Hard Climb Hill. A water snake, which I'm fairly certain was a copperhead was my companion this time. Please let me know if you can tell from the picture if it's a copperhead or not. The snake was a big one and hung out most of the time under an underwater log just below the tree in the painting. I visited a couple of times, so I'm also posting the painting as it was in progress. I liked the reflections of the leaves in the water in the bottom left in the earlier version. Oil on board.
New Hope Riverbank
New Hope Riverbank in progress
This painting took two trips to a short trail in Hillsborough. During the second visit I was handed a pamphleted excerpt from "The Nectar of Devotion" and almost wound up painting a portrait of a three-legged pug, which would have been a pleasure.
The long story goes like this: I was looking for a spot to paint on the Haw River near the Bynum pedestrian bridge. Two boys with a pellet gun told me I could turn left at the end of the bridge (where there is access to the river, but no trail) and when I get to the gate at the end of the street, I could walk as far as I wanted. On the gate was a no trespassing sign with the name Ricky Spoon and phone number. So I called Ricky and he allowed access. It turns out Ricky is a well-known developer in Pittsboro with a reputation. I never found a trail to the river, so I cut through the unkempt woods to get there.
Red and black cicadas were all over. And it turns out that they like oil paint. Either that or the natural turpenoid I was using. One cicada was trying to eat the can.
Haw Below Bynum
Haw Cicada on canvas bag