Its been a week of "getting started" with this oddball project.  The weather has been a huge obstacle, rain pouring from the sky, cold and damp in the car, even with the heater on.  We're at an ugly in-between stage in Oakridge Oregon, the snow with all its beauty and balance is melted away, except for chunks in the roads and lawns, where it was compacted by a shovel, or the heavy weight of an automobile. 

I love the sounds of the rainstorms more than the sights of them.  Salmon Creek is about two blocks from my little house, and with all the melted snow and rain draining down the mountain sides, the water literally roars through town, augmenting the sound of the fat raindrops falling from the sky.

Today I was drawn to record these sounds during our daily walk.  And when there was a short lull in the ferocity of the driving rain, I actually did put brush to paper and learned how may mistakes I've made in the preparations for this project of making plein air paintings from inside my car, (hence plein-car project.)

The video that follows was made from the levee trail on the east bank of Salmon Creek.  I held an umbrella overhead while filming, it acted like a sound enhancer, a nice little surprise that made up for the squishy feeling inside my boots. 

When the lull came, I drove back to the OIP, Oakridge Industrial Park, that used to be a mill site.  It is in the process of becoming "improved" and I am planning to paint this area plein-air or plein-car over the next three months.  The painting featured at the beginning of this blog is a first attempt to paint from my vehicle.  I learned how to improve my system, and how a little layer of white before the sky goes down helps create the feeling of clouds. 

It feels good to have taken direct action, even on a stormy Sunday. :-)