painting and photographic works

A Salt Spring Painting Excursion (Day 5) – Plein Air by the Creek

Wednesday Nov 14, 2007,  my third full day on Salt Spring Island. It is a cool, overcast day but painting in on my agenda. I load up my gear and head out to the Cusheon Creek area that I had scouted out the day before.

Set up for plein air painting near Cusheon Creek

I painted a couple of small studies focusing on the creek, the orange leaf litter and the green trees but I was not happy with either one. Admittedly I had not been doing much plein air painting recently and I was feeling very rusty. Still I hoped that I had captured something of the feeling of the area that I could use, along with my reference photos, to create  a decent painting back in the studio. By the time I had done the 2 sketches, the 5 degree temperature had made me feel quite chilled, so I was happy to head back to the villa for lunch (and to warm up by the fireplace).

After lunch, I headed back to the creek area but I didn’t take my painting gear, electing instead to hike with my camera and collect more reference photos. I want to explore a different portion of the valley this time so I walked up to the end of Creekside Road and then descended  into the valley and hiked back along the creek – trying to follow it all the way to where the creek empties into the ocean. Unfortunately the trail seemed to fade away and I never did get all to way to the coast. Nonetheless I had a great walk and captured another 100 photos of the area.

Stripey Tree

Cusheon Creek

Deadfall across the creek

That was pretty much the day. After dinner I started reading Emily Carr’s book  Hundreds and Thousands. Emily Carr of course is from Victoria and painted coastal landscapes that inspire me and are reminiscent of some of the landscapes that  I’ve been experiencing on the island.

As the rain came down during the evening I decided to fore-go a planned hot tub soak but I did do a bit of painting. Set-up on the kitchen table I reworked the “Trees” painting that I had done earlier in the day, down by the creek.

Trees of Cusheon Creek - oil on hardboard (8" x10")

(Incidentally, I used only palette knives for all my painting on this trip)

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