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 23, 2012
Golden Ears Provincial Park is one of the largest in British Columbia (over 62,500 hectares;1 hectare=2.47 acres) and features the pristine Alouette Lake. It also has three campgrounds and hiking trails through extremely rugged terrain. Vegetation is typical of the coastal western Hemlock forest of BC and the mountainous backcountry is not only rugged but has–almost annually–proven fatal to the unprepared. Those who go off are cautioned to understand what they’re getting themselves into.
Normally, Alouette Lake looks just like this . . .
But the day I attempted to paint this scene, it started out very foggy, then changed to drizzle, then showed some promise of clearing-up. I was in the camping area that was the most primitive, and of course only when I decided to begin painting did it actually start to full-out pour. By then I was so into it that I had to keep going, even though drops were falling directly onto my work-in-progress (though I did have a make-shift tarp). But to this day, this is one of my most favourite paintings because even though it has its distortions, I didn’t give in and stayed until I finished it . . .
I can still smell the coleman stove coffee and feel the warmth of the mug against my numb fingers as I celebrated by putting my brushes away–and swearing I’d never paint another #%$#!@# watercolour again in my life.
January 9, 2012
The official website of the newly-created (2007) District of Clearwater reads: ” . . . Located in the heart of British Columbia and Wells Gray Country, Clearwater, B.C., is the gateway to Wells Gray Provincial Park and is surrounded by the Trophy Mountains, Raft Peak, Grizzly Peak and Dunn Peak. This rural community is truly a place for all seasons. . . “
They aren’t bragging. I encourage you to go to ‘www.districtofclearwater.com’ and see the gorgeous photos for yourself.
Kamloops–where I live–is about an hour’s drive South of Clearwater. The Interior of British Columbia is highly mountainous and sudden storms and weather systems are normal when living in higher elevations. One half of the sky can be as blue as sapphire, but just behind me things will be ominous and threatening.
This painting–now in a private collection–attempts to capture the spirit ‘North of Clearwater’ . . .