January 24, 2012
Locarno Beach in Vancouver, British Columbia, is named after a Peace Conference held in Locarno, Switzerland in 1925. It is one of several lining English Bay facing West Vancouver, and usually looks like this . . .
The particular day I chose to paint the Bay started off nicely enough, but gradually went from blue skies to dark clouds, to high winds and pelting rain. Once I had my materials spread out over one of the conveniently situated beached logs, I didn’t want to give in to a bit of ‘weather’. Yet, the rain came in gusty sheets and finally forced me to give in or lose what little picture I’d managed to throw together up till then . . . .
If you live in a particularly arid part of the planet and need some precipitation, just invite me to come and start a watercolour.
January 22, 2012
The natural rock formation known as Arch Cape is located along the Pacific coast and is 3.8 miles south of Cannon Beach, Oregon–in the extreme southwestern part of Clatsop County. For a few summers at the turn of the century ( ! ) I took my old Volkswagen camper van to various locations along the Oregon Coast, which is simply a watercolourist’s dream come true.
This painting has a story because I was so near the water that I began realising the tide was coming in. Not wanting to abandon things, I just kept at it . . . . until finally a big wave swept over my feet and dragged everything out into the surf! I was scrambling to rescue all my stuff. For that reason, this particular piece had to be done in the studio relying on my ruined attempt and the useful guidance of fellow painter E. J. Fitzgerald who helped me with composition and the treatment of the waves.
January 19, 2012
Ten percent larger than New York’s Central Park, is Vancouver’s Stanley Park–1001 acres of enormous cedars, Totems, hidden pathways, creeks, ponds, ocean views, as well an amphitheatre and The Vancouver Aquarium. It was named after Lord Stanley, the Governor General of Canada in 1888 (and also the person who donated the famous Stanley Cup for the emerging hockey teams of the day to compete for). Lord Stanley became the first Governor General to visit British Columbia when the Park was being dedicated.
This painting was done on location within the Park while sitting on one of the many available sand-encased logs. The spot is known simply as Third Beach, and looks out towards a very distant (not always visible–and not in this painting) Vancouver Island.
It took most of the day, and while there a baby seal washed up on shore. Being tied down to all my spread-out gear, I called out to those closest. Mobile phones weren’t as prevalent then as now, and it took the gathering crowd quite a while before attendants from The Vancouver Aquarium came to rescue the little guy. They have an adoption program which results in a release later on after the animals have matured.
January 11, 2012
Taking the 40 minute ferry from Vancouver one reaches Gibson’s Landing, the beginning of the 85 km. stretch known by British Columbians as The Sunshine Coast. The road leads North towards Alaska, but ends at Powell River–the furthest major city on the coast–and visitors simply have to either turn around and come back, or decide to permanently stay.
This watercolour was painted on location on a section of the Sunshine Coast near the town of Sechelt. The wind was blowing across the Pacific, creating large breakers and bringing in a bank of fog which made it difficult to dry my paper enough to keep going.