Buttes, Buddies and Buffalo!

Andrea and me at Yellowstone Falls
Andrea and I just returned from an amazing 6-day painting trip to Montana and Yellowstone with our friends Ryan Mellody, Daniel Keys, and Tyler Murphy. Though we traveled far and wide in search of the very best painting spots, our "base of operations" was Tyler's hometown of Red Lodge, MT, where he has recently opened the impressive Montana Gallery. It was a fantastic time of painting, and a joy to spend time with these incredible artists. Check out some of the highlights from our trip below!

By Adam
(plein air study)

By Andrea
(plein air study)

L to R: Me, Dan, Ryan (Ryan is painting a deer skull
hanging inside the shed. No, the shed did not fall on him!)

Breaks from Landscapes
Andrea and Ryan were kind to model for the rest of us to paint. Life doesn't get better than this!

Painting Andrea in a tent house

Painting Ryan at Montana Gallery

Ryan by Adam
(alla prima study)

Ryan by Andrea
(alla prima study)

L to R: Tyler, Me, Ryan, Dan at Yellowstone Falls
(I need to get me some rad shades like these guys!)
On our way to MT, Andrea and I passed signs for Yellowstone and regretted being so close without time to stop. After we arrived in MT, we were surprised and excited to learn the guys had planned to take a painting day-trip there!

On Saturday, the five of us piled into a minivan and headed out from Red Lodge to Yellowstone. The drive took 6 hours one-way, but it was so worth it! The diversity of Yellowstone's geography and wildlife is astounding. The landscape is characterized by vast mountains and valleys, bubbling hot springs, and the magnificent Yellowstone River and Falls. We saw elk, antelope, a coyote, dozens and dozens of buffalo, and even a black bear cub!

Ryan painting Old Faithful

A steaming thermal hot spring by Adam
(plein air study)

Beartooth Mountains

Back in MT, we visited the breathtaking Beartooth Mountains. As I sat on the ground with an expanse of valleys and lakes displayed before me, I was awed by God's creation and felt very small! I prayed that God would allow me to capture just a small portion of the stunning scene before me. I determined to put all distractions from my mind and simply make my painting a celebration of His glory.

By Adam
(plein air study)

Ryan met a curious friend!

L to R: Ryan, Loren, Keith (friend of
Tyler's fam), Tyler, Andrea, Me
Everywhere: Mosquitoes
It was a treat to have Tyler's mentor, Loren Entz, join us. We gathered around to watch as he made a beautiful painting, finishing just as a glorious sunset completely changed the landscape. To see Loren's work, visit his website here.

Signing Off
We accumulated quite a collection of paintings!
And this doesn't even include the last day's work
(Works in progress)
Early Tuesday morning, Andrea and I headed home feeling energized and inspired, with lots of studies and photos we're excited to work from. It was an incredible time with great friends, and we can't wait to do it again!

Check out these links to see our friends' amazing work and more photos from the trip:
Ryan's Facebook
Daniel's Facebook


  1. Thanks Adam . . . wonderfully summed up! Can't wait till we can all paint together again.

    1. Thanks Ryan, and ditto--we can't wait to do that again, we had a total blast! Thanks so much for thinking of us, man.

  2. Beautiful work, guys! If anything you guys are getting better. Keep up whatever you are doing!!

    1. Thanks for that encouragement, Matt, we appreciate it! Hope things are going great for you. Drop me a line sometime and let us know what's been going on with you!

  3. Spectacular! Sounds like a wonderful trip - painting with friends. I like what you said about making your painting a celebration of God's glory. I am eager to see the paintings that come from this excursion.

    1. Thanks, Coleen. God has certainly created a beautiful world, and He deserves all the glory! I'm looking forward to working from our studies. Thanks for the comment!


We'd love to hear from you!

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.