Bear Mountain State Park

Today is Stephen’s birthday, and he wanted to go to Bear Mountain State Park. We’ve never been there, other than to drive through once, so we wanted to see what it’s like. It is beautiful, with the kind of rock outcroppings and exposed granite slopes that I love, along with fabulous views of the Hudson River. We climbed up in the Perkins Memorial Tower at the summit of Bear Mountain, where there are 360 degree views. In the very distance we could see the New York City skyline, rising above mist like a fantasy city.

We found a few quiet, shady places to sit and paint (me) and muse (Stephen), where we wouldn’t bake in the sun. Orange granite sloping below us, fragrance of pines rising around us, vultures soaring through the view… It could have been a perfect place to spend the day, BUT we realized that if we want a peaceful, pristine experience of nature, we need to go north toward the Catskills, rather than south toward the city, at least on a beautiful Saturday. It seemed as though the city had emptied itself into the park, and with the mass of people came the blaring of car horns, radios, and motorcycles; along with people everywhere and scattered trash. Oh well… we made the best of it, seeking out some less populated spots, then headed north to Cold Spring to have lunch.

Despite the crowds, we had a great time together, just hanging out, enjoying each other’s company. I am so thankful for my wonderful husband!

Happy Birthday, Stephen!

The Thinker…

Bear Mountain State Park Queensboro Lake
Queensboro Lake from Bear Mountain
Iona Island from Bear Mountain

Some recent sketches

I haven’t posted much recently, partially because I’ve been trying to get out and sketch more when the weather had been nice, which means less time online. It’s funny how the internet exerts such a siren call, enticing me to spend time online, but when I just get outside and start sketching, I feel free of that pull and immerse myself more in the present moment. Here are a few sketches of some such recent “present moments,” some alone and some with Stephen.
Looking downriver from Shadows restaurant during Stephen’s birthday dinner
Bowdoin Park oak tree

Hudson River Watercolor

The trees may not have leaves yet, but spring really is finally arriving here in New York. Two days ago I went to Bowdoin Park, sat in the warm sun overlooking the Hudson River, and played with my paints. I love the varied colors of the land all year, and I especially like the more subtle melange of colors in an early spring landscape, when grasses are starting to green up and shrubs are just barely gaining a hint of color from buds swelling with the promise of vibrant color to come.

Hudson River
Watercolor 6″ x 12″

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Melissa Fischer’s Art