Algonquin Park, Ontario

Cleaning up around the studio this year took me back to a time around 1975. We were about to begin a journey that would take us from Toronto, Ontario across the country to Vancouver Island, British Columbia and back again.

Our first stop provided an opportunity to spend a few days in Algonquin Park. With a few art supplies a tent, axe and simple foods we hiked to Lake Provoking within the park. After a short walk we found a comfortable camp site beside the lake. It became a good place to practice working as an artist. 
Being summer the weather cooperated allowing sketching and painting outside without cover. Trees and plants became subjects for pencil and water colour painting on paper. The paper was carried in a simple binder that also provided support.

I also found this drawing of Ralph Demaine. Ralph was a lifelong resident of a area west of the park in the Muskoka District and the Town of Huntsville on the north west shore of Lake Vernon.
Ralphs' ancestors were among the first families to settle in the area in the late 19th century in the former town of Hoodstown. Hoodstown disappeared with the fortunes that followed expected railroad construction when the expected path of the railroad changed and the line through Hunstville.  

I recall a very gentle soul who loved the surrounding area and all it offered especially his sugar bush and the sweet maple syrup it offered up in the early spring. 

A few years later while living in Nova Scotia I returned to the sketches and made some paintings. The waterfall was located on the hike to Lake Provoking and offered pools of crystal clear water. 

 The tree and rocks were located around a cove on the lake, a short hike from our campsite. It was hard to imagine a tree growing in such a circumstance but there it was and may still be today almost forty years on.
You can also see Northern Light for more about the park.

Minas Basin

There is something amazing about the Minas Basin and the surrounding terrain. The area is spoken of as the ancient home of Glooscap, charted by early European sailors and explorers, and described in all forms of art. The area boasts the highest tide in the world.

Like watching a flower open, watching the water rise and fall is hypnotic. The air moves in response and  birds of all sizes rise in its presence. It seems a perfect place to paint and over the years I have approached the site form many different angles. The most obvious is from the beach at the mountain base. 

Working with a site over a short period, capturing some of the energy of the day creates a feeling on parallel with photography but with one very interesting difference. An emotional element is infused through the lines and colours chosen adding a descriptive element unavailable to the camera.

See more Minas Basin look at my post Paint, Paint, Paint or Mooseland.