"Ode to Oregon" Watercolor

A birthday watercolor for Anne
A year ago in January, I attended a Women's Art and Writing Retreat in Oregon and met 10 lovely, interesting women.   It was held in the forest at a retreat center outside Portland.

In addition, I also was able to spend time with my art buddy, Anne Jennings Paris.  I don't get to see her very often -- every few years --- but I really cherish the time we spend together.  We discuss all of our art projects.  And share the work of other artists who have inspired us.  And ideas for how to move forward and keep doing our artwork.  It is hard to balance it with the other parts of our lives.

Somberness Sunlit
Emily Carr 
c. 1937
I had recently discovered Emily Carr's work, so I would also say that I was thinking about her while I was painting this watercolor. She is a Canadian artist, who lived in the Pacific Northwest, and lived from 1871-1945.  A pioneer.  She is considered post-Impressionist.

One of the coolest things I experienced during that trip was seeing a deer swimming in the Clackamas River near Anne's home.

Look for the deer swimming upstream

My trip to Oregon was very inspiring on many levels and what I like about travel is that you can live off the fumes and memories of a trip for a very long time.