For many years, usually in July, we would go down to Raton in the northeast corner of New Mexico. What a fabulous area to paint! So many sandstone cliffs, mesas, mountains and volcanic formations. Endless variety and there is a sense of solitude to the vastness of the valleys below.
I would get out early to paint, as the sky is very clear, the air is cool and dry. Finding shade would allow me to paint until roughly noon. In the afternoon, thunder clouds would start to form and often there would be a downpour, thunder and lightning. Evening is also a good time to paint. The residual thunderstorm clouds would provide a purple contrast to light on the golden sandstone.