Papermill Falls Waterfall Wednesday blog cover
Waterfall Wednesday

Waterfall Wednesday: Papermill Falls

Papermill Falls by Laura Jaen Smith. Acrylic landscape painting of waterfall in Avon from 50 NY Waterfalls Project.

This is one of my favorite waterfalls that I visited for my recent project of 50 New York waterfalls.  I know I’ve said that before, but this one would definitely be in the top 5, probably even the top 3.  This waterfall is Papermill Falls in Avon, NY.   

(As a small side track, I just did some much needed improvements to my gallery page of my website that shows the waterfalls from this project – take a second to check it out!)

Papermill Falls is located in a small community park with just a short walk from the parking area.  It is located near this beautiful cobblestone bridge that features one of the old millstones.    The site used to hold the Wadsworth Flour Mill that was built around 1797.  It burnt down in 1864 and was later rebuilt as a paper mill producing 400 tons of paper each year. 

Photo of bridge Papermill Falls Avon NY by Laura Jaen Smith
Papermill Road bridge, photograph, 2018

Papermill Falls is a 10 foot tall cascade.  It is part of the Conesus Creek that flows from Conesus Lake, which is the last Finger Lake to the west of the Finger Lakes region.  The waterfall is covered by a pedestrian bridge that enables visitors to walk across to view the park and the creek below.  Here’s a video that I took while on location.  (Isn’t the sound of it just so soothing?)

Photo of Papermill Falls Avon NY by Laura Jaen Smith
Papermill Falls bridge, photograph, 2018

You may have noticed the graffiti that covers the pedestrian bridge.  I think that this is the aspect of this site that made it the most interesting to me.  There’s something about all of the different lives that have left their mark on this site.  There’s something beautiful about a place that’s way out practically in the middle of nowhere that has a feeling of something completely urban.  (I’m sure there are many that do not share my thoughts on this.)

The graffiti on the bridge also made painting the scene more of a challenge.  It was important to me to include this element in the painting but not in a degree that it becomes to distract from the waterfall.  After several hours of fussing with it, I feel I managed to keep this balance in the piece.  

Have you seen this waterfall in person before?

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Places to learn more about Papermill Falls:

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