Eden Mills Roots (oil on canvas 5 x 7 in.) Sold

15 April found us in Eden Mills, Ontario, walking the new shoreline of the Eramosa River upstream of the old dam, which no longer holds back its full height of water.  Since I painted "Cedar By the Spillway" on 9 April last year, much of the water has gone underground through a series of cracks in the limestone bedrock, that are locally called "sinkholes".

Only the tips of these ancient drowned Cedar stumps were showing above the surface of the water last year. They were probably cut when the land was cleared long ago.  I like the sinuous shapes, and how the blue sky reflects on the shaded surfaces of the ghostly wood.

Walking here where the water used to be, I step carefully over what initially look like old water-swept rags, but which are beginning to send up tight yellow Coltsfoot blooms from the raggy corners that appear to be stuck in cracks among the flat rocks, the clotted, darkened scraps and remnants of last years broad leaves swept in a downstream direction by spring freshets.  I took several photos of these, enjoying the contrasting yellow flower buds, water-smoothed stones, and crusty rags of last years leaf, but decided to paint the old stumps instead, looking upstream away from the now dry spillway and the village of Eden Mills.


  1. I'm always amazed by the wonderful detail you can paint on so small a canvas. Imagine this beauty being revealed because of sinkholes!
    — K

    Kay, Alberta, Canada
    An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

  2. Yes, the sink holes have been an issue for years, and people have plugged them successfully, but as they opened wider the community requested government assistance to block the holes, to help retain the lake for recreational purposes, without success... But when the holes finally re-opened in a big way as predicted, and the water level dropped, more riverbank and wetland habitats appeared, and the river is still good for swimming and canoeing.

    Fred and I are no longer be concerned about the dam breaking some spring and damaging the property of our friends who live right beside the spillway.


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