This painting series was a bit unique for me. It had a common theme in terms of the subject matter – all of the images were drawn from what I saw (and captured with photos) during the night while on a train between Edmonton and Vancouver in November of 2007. What was unique for me was the use of oil pastel on a number of the works, and oil paint on a couple of larger ones.
This is a painting I produced in November of 2008, inspired by a journey that I took a year before that:
This painting is one of a number of paintings in a series I call my Night Train series. Seven works in the series have been completed to date – in oil and oil pastels. Click on this link to see the other works in this series on my website.
The series was inspired by a VIA Rail train trip that I took in November 2007 from Edmonton to Vancouver (this was the first leg of the journey that took me to Salt Spring Island for a week of exploring, photography and painting – but that is another story for another time). The VIA Canadian traveled across the province of British Columbia through the long night, arriving in Vancouver at dawn. I spent a lot of time through the evening and night staring out the window, often taking some long exposure, hand-held photos which served as the inspiration for the paintings.
This series was a bit of a departure for me both in the degree to which I abstracted the landscape and also the darkness of the color palette. Overall I was very pleased with the outcome.
This painting was donated to (and sold at) a fund raising auction for the Visual Arts Alberta Association (VAAA) in November of 2009. I find the idea of capturing the mysterious self-abstracting night landscape as seen from a train, very compelling. I fully expect to return to this theme and series again in the future.
*This painting was reproduced on my latest art card and I would be happy to mail one of these postcards to anyone requesting one (while supplies last).