In dry West Texas you wouldn’t think it to be a likely location of a wildlife preserve, but a natural playa does exist right in the backyard of Midland, TX at the I20 Wildlife Preserve.
On November 2, 2013 the Preserve had their first annual “Paint the Playa” art show and benefit to support their programs. I donated the following small 9×12 painting for their silent auction. It’s painted with the same technique I use for my eBay auction pieces, using acrylic paint to begin and then finishing out with oils but with more detail than one of my plein air pieces or a study. It depicts a scene from the Preserve.
I’m happy to report that the painting was successfully auctioned off and the weather that day was beautiful! You can learn more about the I20 Wildlife Preserve here.
If you’re wondering what a a “playa” is, its sometimes referred to as a “playa wetland” or “playa lake”. They are shallow, circular depressions across the Great Plains that are filled by rainwater and go through a number of wet-dry cycles throughout the year. The area serves as recharge points for groundwater as well as providing habitat for native and migratory wildlife, and native plants. Here are a few photos I took as I walked along the Preserves trails.
Hope you enjoyed the photos!