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Sketchbooks, Valuable Artist’s Tool

                                                                                “Curious Bear” by Stefan Baumann   At our camp near Coulter Bay, on the boundary of the Teton National Park, there was a curious bear whose name is Number 399. When I captured my first glimpse of Number 399, I grabbed my sketchbook to make a quick sketch on paper knowing that I could later transfer it to canvas. The bear stood for a few moments among several fallen tree trunks before lofting away to another campsite. While he stood there, a burst of wind made his fur ripple like waves on water, back-blowing his thick winter coat. The…

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A Foggy Morning in Olympic National Park

“Misty Morning in Olympic National Park” The first time I traveled to Olympic National Park, I went to paint a scene of a foggy morning on the coastline in the Park for my PBS series, “The Grand View, America’s National Park through the Eyes of an Artist.” We drove through the Elma Valley and over to the Olympic peninsula where more than 73 miles of the northern Pacific coast is protected by the Olympic National Park. Visitors are able to experience miles of magnificent coastline full of tide pools, sandy beaches, and rocky cliffs. I chose a cold and foggy landscape…

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Painting A Geyser in Yellowstone Park, Part 2

“Yellowstone Geyser Primary Sketch” by Stefan Baumann

“Yellowstone Geyser, Primary Sketch” by Stefan Baumann Three Keys to Plein Air Success, Inspiration, Composition & Application, Part 2   Inspiration As demonstrated by painting a geyser in Yellowstone National Park, an artist must first be inspired by an idea, feeling or vision of what he wants to communicate with the viewer about the scene or location before applying any paint to the canvas. The source of inspiration may be the effect of light in the scene, or a feeling created by the lighting or the time of day, or it might come from several objects in a location that…

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Painting a Geyser in Yosemite National Park, Part 1

“Yellowstone Geyser, Opus 1″ by Stefan Baumann

“Yellowstone Geyser, Opus 1” by  Stefan Baumann Three Keys to Plein Air Success ~ Inspiration, Composition & Color Application, Part 1 When I begin a painting on location, my main objective is to capture the subject in as little time as possible, and when painting a geyser, the pressure to paint fast is even greater. Painting a geyser like one in Yellowstone Park depicted in “Yellowstone Geyser, Opus 1” is quite a challenge, as it only erupts every 12 hours and the burst of water and steam lasts only 2-3 minutes. Capturing the essence of the geyser blowing upwards into…

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Christmas Afternoon in Yosemite National Park

” Skating in Yosemite Late Christmas  Day” by Stefan Baumann This painting was painted late Christmas day on location in Yosemite National Park. Every so often I take off and spend the holidays doing what I enjoy most, and that is painting on location to capture the feeling of the day; the mood, the temperature, and the stories of places I travel to experience. Spending Christmas outside, apart from religious Holiday, feels different than any other holiday. The light is low as we approach the shortest day of the year, the pace is slow, and the conversion of the cold…

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Yellowstone Journal Entry ~ Sept 22, 2013

We continue our travels to Yellowstone after spending the night at Peek Ranch, a private horse ranch on the border of west Idaho traveling up the Snake River.  It is the same route that the Louis and Clark expedition followed as he and a team of explorers, commissioned by Thomas Jefferson, searched for a northern passage through Northern America.  Our trail drifts Northwest of Yellowstone along the backside of the Tetons, a route made famous by early western fur trappers who named the mountain range (which resembled large pointed breasts) the “Tetons.” Then, our compass points east and we ascend…

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