Lisa Manners

Wild Places I Remember

Lisa Manners - Biography

Rocky Mountain National Park - a favorite plein air location. 

In my early twenties, my future husband introduced me to birding. To really see birds, one must immerse oneself in nature. We've explored diverse natural areas from desert to estuary, rainforest to tundra. I've traveled through six continents and seen nearly a quarter of the world's species of birds. 

For over two decades I worked in a demanding technology field with weekly travel to clients throughout the US and beyond. Each weekend I escaped to a half-day watercolor class, the only way I had found to free my mind from everyday pressures.  And each year we took off for a month to explore wild places.  My husband did all the planning.  He would ask what I wanted to see, and make all the arrangements.  I wanted to see a Harpy Eagle in its rainforest nest.  I wanted to watch Grizzly Bears catch salmon in a river. Many of these wild places are etched in my memory forever: the great mammal migration stretching across the plains of East Africa; the kaleidoscope of colorful sea life on the Great Barrier Reef; the dazzling clouds of butterflies when sun breaks through at Iguazu Falls.

In 2009, while living in Colorado, I began painting with the Plein Air Painters of Estes Park (PAPEP).  That year I also ventured beyond watercolors to try plein air with oils.  Painting outdoors means risking bugs and twigs falling on the wet paint, fast-moving clouds or sun that force you to work quickly as the scene changes before your eyes, and the occasional wind gust that blows over the easel.  But you get to enjoy the scent of pines, the warmth of the sun, and perhaps spot a woodpecker, magpie or ground squirrel. 

In October 2014, I moved to Oregon, and look forward to getting to know the Pacific Northwest.  

Follow my blog, where I would like to engage in discussions of art , wildlife and wild places.  In 2012 I kept a daily journal of a birding trip from the high Andes to the Amazonian rainforest in Peru.  Those blog pages and the accompanying photo gallery are still available on my blog.