4 x 6 inches, oil on canvas
18 September 2009
Crab Lake, just south of Cartier, Sudbury District, Ontario
We parked last night after midnightin a pulloff on Highway #144 at Crab Lake, and this morning Fred was eager for me to do a "morning painting" here. Apparently there are Pitcher Plants growing on little boggy islands floating just across a beaver-churned morass of peat slurry. Fortunately someone had thrown tires into the breach and we crossed rather tipily to the largest island.
11:00 The little floating bog is golden and red with Sphagnum and furzed with Leatherleaf and Sweet Gale. Thin threads of tiny Cranberry leaves embroider themselves into the mossy tapestry. Red and green Pitcher Plant leaves, clustered like politicians at a convention catch the sun in their pitchers, glowing so their red veins show. Tiny Sundews lurk about the bases of the pitchers. Small, smooth waves lap through a gap between islands, and a pile of huge blocks of grey granite looms a short distance from shore.
My circular folding stool sinks a little and water comes up when I sit down by a double clump of Pitcher Plants near the edge of the bog mat, I take my photos and decide to make a complex underpainting with all the backlit colours..
13:00 The sun came around to the front of the pitchers and I lost the backlighting, so I responded to the lunchtime call of "Yo' eggs is gittin' code!" and finished in the trailer from my photos
What a strange little painting this is! I feel that if it could never really be finished. If I had several days to paint for a couple of hours each morning when the light is just right, I could work into it so much detail and still find more to be done!