Saturday, September 20, 2008
Holiday Series 2008
1. Hwy 17, it's a long long ride (from 8:30am to 5:30pm) to Lake Superior from my home, much time spent gazing out the window as the changing landscape slides on by. You never know what you'll see on Hwy 17, as the landscape changes from rocky pine covered shield lands to a swath of open prairie flanked by forest. Once I looked up and saw bison, another time cowboys riding by along side the highway (not kidding!). I thought I was dreaming, but it was real. Then the hills of Sault Ste Marie loom up and you're almost there.
2. Lake Superior is about far horizons and big skies. The cloud forms are a landscape in themselves.
3.& 4. Gargantua Harbour. 1k of sand beach, 2k of cobbles, endless forest to the east, infinite horizon to the west. The sky can change in minutes. As I painted #3, billowing purple clouds slid across the hills, a wind came up and plein air painting was over for the rest of the week.
5. Moonrise and ominous clouds obscured the sky over Gargantua Harbour. Too windy for painting.
6. Big waves! Really big waves! Humongous waves smashing on rocks. These were fantastic. Once we got back to the sand beach, we went swimming. As they moved into the shallows, the waves climbed ever higher and towered over our heads. I'm not sure I can call it swimming; more accurately reffered to as 'getting smashed around by Lake Superior'. Taking a wave full frontal was like getting punched in the gut. One learns to turn sideways if a biggie is coming. Some of them are just so monstrous you could only duck and cover (unless you want to be turned into a human pretzel). The backwash was so strong that we stayed out of the deeps afraid we'd be swept out to sea. The waves were too big and unpredictable for body surfing. I tried, and thought I was going to be bent in half. Curling up was safer, but I still got sent into mind-boggling spins. It was scary, it was fun, not to mention chilly.
7. More waves smashing on rocks. View from Rhyolite Cove looking north. The rocks we have always sat on while lunching were drenched with surf so we had to sit higher and change our view point. Not always a bad thing.
Images: 2.5" x 3.5" 200lb watercolour paper, ink & watercolours