Robert P. Britton, Jr.’s painting of a waterfall in upstate New York

Among the many blessings of being a plein air painter is the opportunity to show people the beauty we discover in their surroundings. That opportunity came to Robert P. Britton, Jr., after he painted a waterfall that held memories for the woman who owned the property.

“I knew a beautiful waterfall near my home in Buffalo, New York, would make a great subject for a plein air painting, but I never before had the nerve to ask the owner of the property for permission to paint it,” recalls Robert P. Britton, Jr. “When the weather warmed up briefly in early 2012, I finally got up my nerve and asked the elderly woman for permission, and her only condition was that I show her the completed painting. I did that, of course, and while she reviewed my work she told me stories about growing up near the waterfall, introducing her new husband to the location, and watching her sons playing there as children.

Britton’s completed painting

“Shortly before Christmas, one of the woman’s sons tracked me down and asked if he and his brothers could buy my painting and make a gift of it to their mother. He explained that she was always talking about the day an artist stopped by and made a wonderful painting of her falls. I framed the painting, wrapped it in Christmas paper, stuck a huge bow on it, and delivered it to the sons. The day after Christmas, the lady called to say how pleased she was to own the painting that would have a place of honor in her home. I suspect she will continue telling people who see the painting about the artist who saw beauty in a place that held such special memories.”

Britton’s painting hanging in the home of the proud owner

Britton goes on, “The joy and happiness I felt about this entire experience made me realize what a blessing it is to be a painter. Our art has the ability to capture moments and memories that can bring joy, happiness, and so much more to those who view our work.” For more information, visit Robert P. Britton, Jr.’s blog at


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here