First plein air painting of the year. It was a lovely day to spend an afternoon outdoors painting. For a change I went with another painter friend which was pleasant and interesting. I paint quickly but she paints even faster – very useful when the light keeps changing. She did two paintings the same size as mine in the time I did one – and yes, beautiful work. Check out Elsa Bluethner’s website!
Another of this summer’s plein air paintings …and another beautiful sunny day but I was able to stand in the shade while painting this time. As I was painting, the water was rising and the small puddles gradually joined together. I just had to decide on a moment and stick with that. So I picked a moment when the great blue heron was fishing on the flats.
In this setup photo I have just finished the under painting and cleaned up my palette before starting to mix paint for the next layer.
What a lovely day that was! I feel so very fortunate to be able to spend time in this beautiful place celebrating it with my brush.
Here is another painting from the wonderful west coast of Vancouver Island. This was a very popular spot for people to take their dogs. Lots of happy pups cavorting on the beach and in the water. This painting was too large to do alla prima but I still worked quite quickly so that the under layers were still wet and moving enough when I added on the next day. It was three consecutive days of painting.
Tom’s wonderful poem speaks of things not seen directly in the painting, expanding on the visual in the imagination.
A cove that curves in shadow cool
beneath the overhanging trees;
clear waters, shallow tidal pools
reveal the secret of the seas:
that as above so too below
the seaweed wavers row on row
like flowers in the empty fields
and fishes dart as do the eels
like birds through sultry summer air
between the stems, above the buds
avoiding clouds that dance and scud
like waves concealing glimpses rare
into the world that dwells below
while above the flowers blow.
I was quite please how this little painting turned out. It was painted alla prima based on a photo from this summer’s Tofino trip. There are three tiny people in the picture – and since the painting is small, they really are tiny – but recognizable as some family members of mine …at least to me!
Tom wrote a lovely poem for this one!
Somewhere out near the edge of forever
an island rides the waves
drifting down the currents, never
ceasing exploration save
to pause and watch a distant shore
where families walk the strand
happy in their lives and more
secure upon the land
than spending decades on the sea
wild roaming ‘cross the foam
until at last they come alee
and know that they are home.
Had the wonderful opportunity to visit the far western edge of this country recently – that is the west coast of Vancouver Island with its incredible Long Beach, charming Tofino, and amazing sunsets! We stayed at Middle Beach Lodge which was lovely. This painting was from a view along the path from the lodge to Tofino …and yes, the wild roses were blooming. The scent of the sea and rich undergrowth of the enormous cedars was a heady combination.
Here is Tom’s wonderful poetic take on this time and place.
Somewhere in the vasty distance
out across the endless sea
moving waves meet wind’s resistance
turning toward us, you and me
who stand upon this western shore
having all and wanting more
while the waves eternal kiss
sand and stone in sunlit bliss
beneath the summer flowers in bloom
whose wafting scent illuminates
our memories in days that wait
for all our yesterdays atuned
to this present joyful place
awash with waves that leave no trace.
I’m hoping that the Gizmorn will feel that attacking is now much too much trouble since the chance of others getting involved is rapidly becoming assured! and Big is showing some character too – not just a lap dog anymore!
I think that we’re getting very close to the exciting conclusion of our “what if” tale. Be sure to check back to read the poem when it arrives in the comments!
UPDATE: Yes! It’s here!! Read the comments for the story 🙂
Arriving at the island, Cindy and the Stranger find the Grinch in the midst of negotiations – somewhere along the way he’s turned into an aging hippy! and he’s attempting Gandhi style passive resistance – at least that’s how I think it might be but I’m not writing the story! Let’s see what Tom comes up with when he sends the next part. I have a feeling this might just be coming to some kind of satisfactory conclusion soon!
UPDATE: And yes, the next poem is here in the comments! Check it out 😀
Today I felt like drawing this sandpiper. Sometimes it would be nice to have his sense of knowing where he’s going and why! He’s very purposeful. Aside from that, I’ve always enjoyed watching them (in nature shows only unfortunately – I’ve never actually seen a live sandpiper…) They inhabit an interstitial zone between land and sea – a bird on the border.
On another note, check out this link to The coming storm by an artist kind enough to put me on her blog roll – thanks!