Friday, 18 October 2019

Plein Air Ensemble Fall Painting Trip 2019 - Part 2

Blog 31

I hope you enjoyed the first part of my travelogue of the Plein Air Ensemble painting trip to Lake Clear. This time, I write about the second and third day of the trip.

Saturday, October 5, 2019

Mirror Mirror..., acrylic, 7" x 5"
When we woke up the lake was cloaked in fog. Overnight, we had the first frost. After the fog lifted, a beautiful blue sky and sunshine appeared. There was not a single cloud in sight, but it was windy and even colder than on the previous day. We found the perfect marsh on Rosien Road. However, by lunchtime, we were all frozen.

We decided to go for a ride to Balaclava, where we admired the beautiful mill that is slowly falling apart. As there was no secure place to set up our easels, we continued to the Fourth Chute in Eganville. On the way, we stopped to take photos of three beautiful horses, a cute donkey, and several Highland cattle that were grazing together on one meadow. At the Fourth Chute, we did not stop for a long time, as it was clear that the beautiful sunshine was attracting a large number of visitors, which is not very appealing when you want to paint on location.

unfinished, acrylic, 8" x 10"
Instead, we returned to Buelow Road, where we finally painted Big Rock. It was still very windy, but in the sunshine, temperatures rose to 15 degrees. We had so much fun that we did not mind that we were late for Happy Hour, even though we missed part of the beautiful music of the multi-talented musicians of the group. A hearty vegetable pasta dish with salad, followed by ice cream gave us energy for the evening’s Jeopardy art game. One of the three groups won with a lead of more than 3000 points, winning half of the maximal points.

I still had enough energy to update the travelogue before continuing with my felted apple blossoms. What a great life of creativity!

Sunday, October 6, 2019

Sleeping Dragon, watercolour, 9" x 12"

The forecast showed a high probability of rain. The sky was dark grey when we woke up. Janis, Hélène and I stayed close to the cottage and decided to paint the dramatic sky and Lake Clear until the start of the rain. I picked up my watercolours for a quick sketch instead of bothering to get out all my painting equipment. However, the sky turned bluer and bluer. It did not take long until the sun came out. This changed the colours of the whole landscape, but it was so wonderful to soak up the sun.

Big Rock, acrylic, 8" x 10"

I went back to the cottage to get my acrylic paints and created another painting of Big Rock - this time from the other side. It was past 1 pm when the sky got very dark again. We had our lunch break and waited for the rain, but it stayed dry. Therefore, we headed out once again to Rosien Road. We stopped to take pictures of an abandoned barn before driving further up the road. We continued to Fire Tower Road, which became so rough that we decided to turn around.

unfinished, acrylic, 8" x 10"

Finally, Hélène and Janis painted a dirt road that was framed by beautifully coloured trees, and I set up in front of a big dark rock. We had assumed that it was a quiet road but many cars, an ATV and even a group of hikers passed us. It was almost 4:30 pm when the rain finally started. At first, I did not even notice it because I was so immersed in my painting. Back at the cottage, Hélène and I still spent some more time painting. As I had not thrown out my palette, when I packed everything into my bag, the folded paper showed a beautiful design. I liked it so much that I printed it onto one of my watercolour papers. It’s a beautiful abstract painting.

Fall Trees, acylic, 7" x 5"
At the beginning of the trip, the organizers gave everyone either a 5” x 7” paper or canvas board to create a “Memory Painting”, a painting that was to be created strictly from memory. I painted a couple of trees in colourful fall foliage and was so absorbed in the process that I missed Happy Hour and hardly made it to the restaurant in time for the turkey dinner and pumpkin pie.

This evening was caricature night, and it was a lot of fun. With permanent markers, we took turns to create a portrait of the person facing us. Despite all the laughter, most of us had a hard time to stay awake until 9 pm. The fresh air and the constant focus on the subject in front of us, while we are capturing the view, are as exhilarating as they are tiring.

Next week, I will publish the last part of the travelogue before going back to a bi-weekly blog schedule.

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