Monday, July 27, 2009

Painting Water Falls on the Cullasaja

On July 20th I traveled to Highlands, NC to do some waterfall studies. This is the first time I have intensely focused on cascades. What a challenge! Not something for the faint at heart. These waterfalls are like hungry lions, devouring swimmers and plein air artists!

Here is a small video of the falls. Try putting this on 10 x 8 inch canvas. before the late afternoon light changes!

Between Highlands and Franklin, NC lies the Cullasaja River and gorge which contains dozens of spectacular waterfalls. This painting was done from the base of the gorge with a view of the lower part of a 200' cascade.

This is a powerful waterfall known by the locals as bust-your-butt falls. Two weeks ago a man died from being caught under a rock.

This 12 x 9 study done was done about 10am.

This is a cascade over a giant slick rock. You would not believe all of the major poison ivy I had to hike through to get to this one

6 x 8 study in shadow about 1pm

8 x 10 study of the same location with sun and more at a distance about 2:30pm

Here is a view of the King of the East. Whitewater Falls south of Cashiers, NC is the highest falls East of the Mississippi at 411'.

You can not appreciate the size of Whitewater Falls without seeing the movement of water. With this video you can begin to sense it's power and great size.


  1. Ha....there you go again...braving the elements...painting subjects I would not dare to try!! I enjoyed the videos, Scott! Hope you had fun!

  2. Hey Cheryl,

    I figure I only have about 10 good years of exploring and painting outdoors and climbing waterfalls so I keep pushing myself.
    Are you going to Leatherwood to the big paint out event in August? Info at

    Happy Painting,