Sunday, May 5, 2013

Pot Lake Fjord (oil on canvas, 11 x 14 in.)


30 April finds me painting at the head of an embayment on a small lake on a Nature Conservancy property in Ontario's Frontenac Arch. The narrow bay is embraced by high granite outcrops, like a miniature Norwegian fjord - with Pines on a cliff to my left (south) and mixed forest on a high ridge to my right. I'm sitting on the ground to paint, amidst tiny pale blue violets, delicate spears of spring grass, and the nodding yellow bells of Twisted Stalk. 

A pair of Turkey Vultures soar and circle, etching a thick-and-thin caligraphic ballet on robin's egg blue above the White Pines. The clouds are reaching and gesturing across the sky in unison with the sweeping branches of the Pines, and the black silouettes of dead stumps in the reflection of the sky echo the weathered stump infront of me. 

I spent a long while studying the scene before I began to paint, not wanting to
commit anything to canvas that wasn't worthy of the place, and I couldn't decide on which composition was best. Gradually the rhythms emerged, and finally I knew what part of the scene was right for the painting.

This shore faces nortthwest, and the prevailing winds have piled old logs and woody debris against the shore like jackstraws, trapping rafts of duckweed and floating bark, twigs, and snails. As I work, Fred clambers over it to scoop up several netfuls of "drift" which will provide useful information on the aquatic and terrestrial molluscs from this side of the lake.


The herringbone-patterned snails are the land snail Anguispira alternata. The large Rams-horn-shaped snails are the aquatic Helisoma trivolvus. The partially crushed ball-shaped item is an oak gall from from an Oak leaf.






Dear supporters and patrons of my art,

This 11 x 14 inch oil painting is available, framed, for $650 from Art Etc at the Art Gallery of Burlington.   
For more information, contact Rhonda Bullock,
Art Sales and Rental Coordinator, (905) 632-7796 #301

Sales of my paintings support our research and conservation work,
Aleta



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