As a dedicated plein air painter, I spend a lot of time painting on location.  The immediacy of the scene and impact of atmosphere and sunlight provide a visual impact that I find both intimidating and inspiring.

As a resident of Vermont, I paint a lot of winter scenes.  The winter landscape can have color, but blue, gray and brown dominate most scenes.  It is a relatively simple palette and is easily mixed from commonly used watercolors.

Things change radically once the greening of Spring actually arrives. It brings with it a lot of green, of course.  But there are also a lot of deep, low-intensity reds along with brown, gray and violet.  Coulter Road Looking North - watercolor plein air sketch by Tony Conner

On this beautiful spring morning, I focused on warming up with sketches, just to get winter off my palette!  When we think of the colors of spring, we mostly think of bright, light greens – yellow-greens especially. But there is also a lot of low intensity red in the buds of trees, particularly on wooded hillsides and mountains.

It is a pleasant mingling of two complementary colors and a surprise for our eyes!