St.Croix River, Minnesota Side | Jeffrey Smith

St. Croix River | outdoor painting just like the picture in the catalog.

When I was a kid, maybe around 15 years old  (Maybe not a little kid mind you, but certainly younger than I am now…),  I received a catalog of plein air painting gear.  One of the pictures in that catalog was of an outdoor painter set up with his gear from the catalog.  He was way out, on a thin strip of land, painting a scene of a rushing river.  I thought to myself, “Wow!  That would be so cool. Painting IN the river!”  It was one of those moments where you think, ” This is the type of thing that a real painter would be doing.”

I’m not sure why it took me 15 years to get there, but I finally got the chance to paint outdoors, on a thin strip of land,  in the middle of a river.  The above painting is the result.  It comes from the same artistic excursion along the Minnesota side of the St. Croix River as River Rocks.  It was a hot day, but wonderfully windy out in the river.

I think that it is only fitting, since my inspiration for the location of the painting was an outdoor painting-gear catalog, that  I should mention that my Alla Prima Pochade box performed beautifully in the wind and the sand and still folded up to fit easily into the backpack I use to carry it.

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