Painting in King’s Canyon
The air is crisp and the earth is still. It is 7 am and the sun
has not yet climbed over the rim of the canyon. The King’s
River gurgles and churns nearby. I am working on a solid wall
of rock thousands of feet high across the canyon from where I
It is my third session on this painting – the third morning
I have risen early and arrived here before the world has woken
up completely. The silence and calm are overwhelming; the sheer
power of this place coming to life can make your head spin.
I am working quickly, preparing
my paints so I will be ready when the show begins. There'll be
no time for mixing then. The light, you see, comes on quickly
and for a brief time the world is all reflectance and color, rapidly
changing, glittering, spectral magic.
And then it is day. I’ll be ready.
I have been at work for some time – I could not tell you
for certain how long – when my attention is drawn to the
sound of a man clearing his