Elizabeth Black Art
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A painting journal of events........
Chuckwalla's Dominion
September 2017 : I was incredibly honored to receive the "Best of Show" award at the Grand Canyon Celebration of Art for my body of plein air work and "Chuckwalla's Dominion, Clear Creek Trail". I have thought about painting this bench on the Clear Creek trail for about 10 years, and finally felt ready to tackle the subject. I guess the idea was well-seasoned, as the painting turned out great!
January 2017 : Sad to say, Act One Gallery in Taos just closed, but I have found new representation in New Mexico at Sugarman Peterson Gallery. This lovely gallery, which I have admired for years, is located just one block off the main plaza in Santa Fe, at 130 West Palace Avenue. Please stop by the next time you are in New Mexico.
Land Behind the Rocks

November 2015: My show of water paintings opens at Mary Williams Fine Arts on November 5th. Hope you can make it to the opening reception, Thursday November 5th from 5-8PM, at 5311 Western Ave (NE corner of Range and Western, just off East Arapahoe). The show runs until December 7th. Check Mary's website for gallery hours.

The painting pictured here is the large (40 x 60) commission I was working on during Open Studios. If you want to see the completed painting, it is now in the offices of Four Point Energy in Denver.

September 2015: I'm going down to the Grand Canyon Celebration of Art and painting on the rim for a week during this plein air event. My studio piece for the event is of Bessie and Glen Hyde, the “Honeymoon Couple”, who set off from Green River Utah on October 20, 1928, in their home-made Idaho scow. Bessie would be the first woman to run the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon, and they planned to use their up-coming fame to make a fortune.  When they reached Phantom Ranch, they hiked up to the South Rim, where the Kolb brothers tried to give them lifejackets.  Bessie and Glen refused, and continued downstream, making it to somewhere below Diamond Creek.  Their scow and belongs were recovered, but they had disappeared.  Their fate remains a Grand Canyon mystery.

Ever since my husband Chris Brown and I did our own "honeymoon trip" down the Grand, just the two of us, I have been intriqued by their story. I read Brad Dimock's excellent book, Sunk without a Sound, and conceived of this painting. Brad was very hlepful, sending me historic images of their boat, which really helped to make the painting more accurate. Chris and Susan Albers were my models.

Bessie and Glen in the Valley of the Shadow
Big Thompson Shimmer
2015: I will be showing new paintings of Boulder Creek and other water in a show at Mary Williams Fine Art, opening November 5th, 2015, along with Margie Swift and Julie Oriet. This is one of the paintings I have completed for the show in November.
April 2015: I just finished an oil painting for the 100th Anniversary of Rocky Mountain Park, of Isabella Bird and Rocky Mountain Jim on their notorious ascent of Long's Peak in 1873. Isabella developed a severe crush on Jim, a man she called a "desperado", and someone who "no sane woman would marry". They are pictured here at dawn in the Boulder Field at the start of their ascent up the Keyhole Route. For more on their adventures, check out A Lady's Life in the Rocky Mountains. This painting will be on display in Estes Park from June 6 to July 26 at the Cultural Arts Council of Estes Park. Isabella and Jim Ascend, Longs Peak, 1873
Arkansas Travelers, for Craig Hospital, Colorado July 2014: I just finished an oil painting for Craig Hospital's Therapeutic Recreation Program. Craig Hospital in Denver, Colorado is a world-renowned rehabilitation hospital that exclusively specializes in the neuro-rehabilitation and research of patients with spinal cord injury (SCI) and traumatic brain injury (TBI). Craig's recreation program helps folks in their rehab programs rediscover the leisure-time activities they love. I hope my painting will encourage some folks to take up rafting!
Jann Dorman and Elizabeth Black in Burgos Spain, Camino de Santiago
October, 2013 :
Jann and I set off on a 120-mile section of the Camino de Santiago in Northern Spain, travelling from Burgos to Leon. Jann walked and I biked and painted along this ancient pilgrimage route. Despite challenging weather (lots of rain), I was able to get 13 good paintings from the trip, which you can see at this link. It was a great adventure: good company, food and scenery! My paint box and drying box are in the two red panniers on the back of the bike, with a tripod strapped on top. Not much room for a whole lot else!
September 2013 :
I will once again be participating in the Grand Canyon Celebration of Art from September 13th through 21st, and painting down at Indian Gardens again this year. I hope for some good monsoon weather to cool the Tonto Plateau off! On Thursday September 19th, Alan Peterson and I will give a program about Gunnar Widforss, a great painter of the Grand Canyon. I will present what I learned about Gunnar's painting techniques and artistic choices from copying his paintings on-location.
Gunnar Widforss
July 2013 :
Chris and I were at Echo Lakes for a couple of weeks. I painted everyday and got some great stuff! Plus I completed a Rephotographic Survey of 14 historic photos of Echo, to see how Echo's forests have changed over the years, and what kind of evidence there is of previous fires in the Echo basin. Click link to the right to get to the rephotographic survey page.
Echo Lake Re-photographic Survey
by Elizabeth Black, July 2013
High Lonesome Autumn February and March 2012 :
Arroyo Gallery in Telluride Colorado is including Chris' and my work in a Valentines' inspired show titled "Married to Art, Talent and Passion, Hand in Hand." I got on a roll painting long horizontal landscapes and enjoyed it so much I could not stop! You can preview all the new paintings here:
February 2013 :
Western Art and Architecture featured a lovely article about Chris' and my art in their February-March Issue. It is written by Rosemary Carstens and presents a very romanitic view of our lives.
The Community Foundation of Boulder County and Linda Shoemaker commissioned me to create a new oil for their lobby. They wanted an iconic Boulder image that showed their commitment to youth. I put together this view of some kids playing in the creek in the fall, with the golden tunnel of ash leaves glowing in the water below. It reminds me of some great days in my own childhood.
Community Foundation Commission
September 2012 :
My hike down and back from Indian Gardens was great! Mike Lowe of Pygmy Guides carried my 55lb pack down in exchange for a painting. I spent 6 great days painting IN the Canyon, back in the heart of familiar sounds, smells and sights. The hike out was lovely; only 40lbs on my back! And the first day the show opened I sold 12 of my 14 paintings!
September 2012 :
I will once again be participating in the Grand Canyon Celebration of Art, from September 7th through September 15th. This year I will be hiking down to Indian Gardens on the 7th and painting along the Tonto Trail for the duration of the paint-out. Then at 4AM on the 13th, I'll load everything into my pack and hike back up to the rim (4 miles, 3000 feet up), pop the paintings into frames, and turn them in to be judged. Wish me luck!

July 2012 :
Chris and I were Artists-in-Residence at the North Rim of the Grand Canyon for 3 weeks. I did a project on Gunnar Widforss, finding the locations of some of his watercolors and attempting to repaint them, to see what I could learn. Here I am painting on the stairs to the Moon Room of the North Rim Lodge, one of Gunnar's preferred locations.

One thing I learned (yet again) is that on-location watercolor painting seriously cramps my painting bliss. I am much happier painting on-location oils!

Summer Evening, Lees Ferry, On the Grand

May 2012 :
Last fall, I won a competition at Arroyo Gallery in Santa Fe. The prize was a one-woman show at the gallery from May 4 to 23rd, 2012. I have been painting hard all winter/spring, and will have lots of new work!

March 2012 :
I was invited to participate in the Cowgirls UP! show at the Desert Caballeros Museum in Wickenberg AZ this March. This very prestigious show features women artists who cover Western themes. I'm not much for cowboys and indians, but I thought some pictographs might go over well in Arizona. For years I have wanted to paint the view from of the Tanner Delta and the marvelous picted boulders there. Here's a sneak preview of the painting called "Ancient Crossroads": it's big: 40" x 48".

Ancient Crossroads
.November Morning Below Nankoweap
September 2011:
I once again participated in the Grand Canyon Celebration of Art, and was very honored to receive the "Best of Show" award for my studio piece, November Morning Below Nankoweap. It rained about 2 inches during the 6 days of the Paint-Out, which made for very challenging conditions and some close calls with lightning on the rim. But I was able to finish 13 small on-location pieces which are showing in the Kolb Studios at the South Rim of the Grand Canyon until the end of November
Sunrise East from Gunbarrel Hill
June 2011:
I was chosen as one of 20 artists in the first Boulder County Open Space Plein Air event. We artists were allowed access to closed Open Space properties for 2 weeks to create 4 paintings each for display at the Old Firehouse Art Center in Longmont. I was honored to receive the Honorable Mention Award for "Sunrise East from Gunbarrel Hill."
Spring 2011:
Plein Air Magazine featured me in a 5 page article in their spring issue. To read the entire article, follow this link: http://elizabethblackart.com/PleinAir_Black_pxx-xx%20%282%29.pdf
Downstream from Saddle Canyon, 9AM
December 2010:
I was named an "Artist to Watch" by Southwest Art. To read the entire article, follow this link: http://www.southwestart.com/articles-interviews/emerging-artists/emerging-artist-elizabeth-black
Elizabeth And Christopher on the Tree Farm

November 2010:
This year is our GRAND OPENING for the Christmas tree farm! Our Scotch Pines are finally big enough to cut. We have been scurrying around getting the farm ready for all the visitors to come. Opening day is December 3rd. To find out more about our Christmas Tree Farm go to http://www.neighborhoodchristmastreefarm.com/.

This year we will have U-cut Scotch Pines, pre-cut Balsam, Fraser and Grand Firs, as well as our usual assortment of Christmas wreaths. Come on by if you are in the neighborhood!

September 2010:
The day after we took out at Diamond Creek, I drove up to the South Rim to participate in the Second Annual Grand Canyon Celebration of Art. This wonderful event includes a six-day-Paint-Out and a two-hour-Quick-Draw. All the participating artists are pictured to the right. (I am #7 from the front.)

We all got our canvases stamped on day one, and then headed out across the rim to create as many great paintings as we could over the next 6 days. I bagged 7 good ones, which all sold by the end of the opening. I was also very honored to receive the North Kaibab Second Place Award for my paintings.

Celebration of Art ParticipantsLast Light on the Tonto, Award Winner

Painting from the raft at Lee's Ferry, photo by Hugh Newton

The painting I did at Lee's Ferry, collection of Walt Garms

August 2010:
Chris and I embarked on our second honeymoon trip down the Colorado river in the Grand Canyon. We had done another one-boat two-person trip back in 1986, and decided to do it again while we still could! We had slightly different equipment this time though: an 18 foot self-bailer instead of a leaky Shoshone; oil paints instead of watercolors; and Chris had a digital camera instead of his Baby Deardorff.

We were less agile and energetic than we were 25 years ago, and the rapids were a little more intimidating. But we had the good fortune to hook up with Nat and Sarah Cobb's trip, and were able to run many of the largest rapids with them. It was wonderful to be back in the canyon, alive and wild in the heart of it! And we both got some wonderful art and source material from the trip, enough to keep me painting new views of the Canyon for years to come.

November 2009 :
My painting, "Comanche Point, Grand Canyon" was chosen to travel to the U. S Embassy in South Africa, as part of the Art in Embassies Program of the U. S. State Department. It will be there for 3 years
. Comanche Point, Grand Canyon
September 2009 :
My painting, "Morning Traffic, Phantom Ranch" received a $2500 prize at the Modern Masters Grand Canyon Celebration of Art, and was purchased by the Grand Canyon Squire Inn, for their dining room. All 6 paintings I produced during the Paint-out were rapidly snapped up on opening night. This was a very productive and gratifying trip!
Morning Traffic, Phantom Ranch, Grand Canyon
September 2009 :
I participated in the Grand Canyon Celebration of Art, at the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. In addition to being in the Paint-Out, I was also in the Modern Masters show at Kolb Studios. I created this piece called "Canyon Worship"especially for the show. It is about how boatmen take folks to special places in the Canyon, to worship. Based on medieval altar pieces, this piece addresses the way that even secular environmentalists have a primal need to worship something grand. We just do it in different ways. The figures are all folks I have worked with, and include (from top, left to right) Drifter Smith, Sharon Hester, Jimbo Tichenor, Suzanne Jordan, Chris Brown, me, Martha Clark, Wesley Smith, and on the back, Becca Lawton and Moley Haymond.
August 2009 :
I participated in Mary William's First Annual Quick-Draw. This was the first time I had done anything like this, and it was really nerve-wracking! I was lucky to have Chris Brown with me. He fielded questions, which allowed me to paint uninterrupted for the 2 hours I had to create the piece.
Mary Williams First Annual Quick Draw

May 2009: I produced a major exhibit about Boulder's irrigation ditches for the town's Sesquicentennial. You can view most of the information that was in the exhibit, including maps, history, rephotography, art and natural history at www.DitchProject.org. Enjoy!

The Ditch Project
Click here to enter

February 2008 :
Chris and I hiked down to Phantom Ranch and spent a week painting and photographing down in the big ditch. We got some really great source material and were able to see the flood releases bring tons of plastic and styrofoam down the river. Chris also met a New York book editor who is interested in publishing a book of his Canyon photographs. It was a really great trip!
Pipe Creek, Grand Canyon
Flood Release at Pipe Creek

Elizabeth's Studio in the snow
My studio and baby Christmas Trees in the snow.

December 2006:
We sold Christmas wreaths this year, as the Christmas trees we are growing are still too small to market. The 95 inches of snow we have had this season has covered up the baby trees, which they really like.
Christopher and Tiger sell wreaths
Christopher and Tiger

October-November, 2006:
I was lucky enough to be invited on Jeni Sue's Grand Canyon river trip. I hopped into a boat at Pipe Creek, and rowed the lower half, taking my paints down the river with me. Along with some great painting time and reconnecting with friends, I got to swim the left side of Bedrock. Not recommended!

Cremation Camp
Dawn over Baseline Reservoir

September-October, 2006:
I spent our gorgeous fall going out and painting on-location around the county, to have lots of small inexpensive work for sale during Open Studios. Open Studios is always the first two weekends in October, and this year we had about 600 visitors to our studios.

Spring 2006:
Cha Cha and I organized and produced the Eccentric Artists Gardens Exhibit and Tour. The Eccentric Artists consist of 39 Boulder County painters, sculptors and gardeners who produce a biennial event:  The Eccentric Artists’ Garden Exhibit and Tour. The painters and sculptors in our group created new work for the Exhibit, inspired by the 14 artists’ gardens which the public could visit during the Tour.

Since I was an exhibiting painter in the Show, a participating gardener in the Tour, as well as the event organizer, it was a very busy spring. The painting to the right was in the show, and is titled "My True Companion", inspired by all the concrete work I did in the garden.

My True Companion

Elizabeth Black painting at her easel

Elizabeth @ ElizabethBlackArt.com
4340 N. 13th St., Boulder, CO 80304

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