I stayed in a motel near Old Fields the night of June 29. This motel was in the same serene landscape, and across the street was a barn and farmland that was perfect for drawing. I did this sketch in ink and colored pencils, as the sun was low on the horizon. Evening light adds to the pastoral dream of sunlit fields, long shadows, and distant lavender hills. I suspect that if I ever had to spend time working at a real farm, I would lose all my love of pastoral scenes.
This barn and the beautiful scene is possibly doomed, anyway, because the motel site and the road are on "Corridor H," a massive road development planned for the eastern part of West Virginia, in the hopes that easier travel will bring prosperous tourists and developers to the state. The motel was filled with construction workers who were working on a big overpass just a few hundred yards away. The "Corridor H" project, though, is rather like nuclear fusion power. They say that progress is being made, and soon the project will make real power, but it never quite happens.
Throughout my travels I appreciated these beautiful pastoral scenes and quiet villages, knowing that the people in them probably are desperate to get out and come to the big city and get a paying job. Farms and quaint houses and little villages are "packaged" for people like me, visitors from the city with money (or a sketchbook) in their laptop backpacks.