I painted this mostly out on my back patio. My husband always laughs when I call it a patio because it is just a few flagstones arranged on the south side of the house.
It was still pretty early in the season and there was plenty of snow in the mountains, so the intense blue of the sky and the blueness of the mountains filled with lots of water just demanded that I paint it.
The house I painted sits on Boyer Lane, which is in Lower Ranchitos. It was built by Taos artist Malcolm Brown and was purchased by Dan Greenleaf, who has recently put it up for sale. The property used to be called Springwild, which is how I will know it in my mind for the rest of my life.
I had a friend who was a groundskeeper there and told me about a lot of the grounds, but that was before Greenleaf bought it.
It really is a hippie paradise. You could make good money by running a very exclusive B&B there, but the road it sits on demands low traffic and chill vibes.
To me, it kind of looks like a ship sailing by. On those rare times when we have fog, it really stands out against the tonal mountains, swimming high above the waves of Chinese Elms and Russian Olives.
“Springtime at Springwild,” oil on linen panel by Melwell, 12×16, is available through Parsons Gallery of the West, at +1-575-737-9200.