8X10, Oil on Panel
At the beginning of May, I attended my first ever plein air competition, Plein Air on the White River in the northern part of the state. This area is close to where I grew up so I know it well. The competition is centered around the town of Cotter. The White River has been dammed up in several places, forming Beaver, Bull Shoals, and Table Rock Lakes. The water that pours out of Bull Shoals Dam is cold and provides a great habitat for trout, making Cotter a haven for fly fishermen. Most attendees spent a lot of time around the river near Cotter painting the typical scenes. I, however, in typical contrarian fashion, struck out far and wide and found things no one else would have looked for. This little church is tucked down a long valley about 20 miles from Cotter near Monarch. Monarch isn't really a town anymore even though a lot of people still refer to it almost as if it is. I used to pass by this church often.