Tuesday, July 31, 2018

#0151 "Charissma"

This oil painting was based on the charcoal drawing (#0149) of Charissma Chadwick, my brother's pure bred Chesapeake. It was the opening day of Duck Season 1986. The weather was wet and cold and it was great to be outside. The Chesapeake breed and this dog in particular so enjoy the water and the companionship. She was a loyal member of the family.

I would have painted this in the Under the Basement Stairs Studio of our home at 81 Western Avenue in Schomberg Ontario.
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Monday, July 30, 2018

#0238 "Phil-er-Up"

Another Schomberg memory...
The gas pump at the Co-op on Main Street, Schomberg during early winter in November 1989. The price on the pump was still per the gallon. You could buy all kinds of farm supplies from the Main Street Co-op. The Co-op was still very much in business when we moved there in 1985. I bought tools and parts to work on our home from the Co-op. Everything was still sold in bulk by weight. Nothing was in plastic sleeves and over-packaged. I wish I had painted the inside of the store before it transformed into something for the tourists.

From 1990 and the Studio Under the Basement Stairs... I never stopped painting.
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Saturday, July 28, 2018

#0173 "Behind the Scenes"

From 1988 and the Studio Under the Basement Stairs...
This is the view behind the Co-op on Main Street, Schomberg during the summer of 1987. My son and I were out for a walk and I liked the unusual angle. All kinds of farm supplies were stored behind the Co-op and the Schomberg River that ran along the back of the property. The Co-op was still in the business of farm supplies when we moved there in 1985. I bought tools and parts to work on our home from the Co-op. Everything was still sold in bulk by weight. Nothing was in plastic sleeves and over-packaged. I wish I had painted the inside of the store before it transformed into something for the tourists.

This area was all flooded during Hazel in October 1954. In Schomberg early damage estimates for the community added up to $250,000 (1954 dollars). Damage reported included holes in sidewalks, undermined bridges, flooding along Main Street, a planning mill ripped from its foundation and washouts on a parking lot that dropped cars into a newly-formed sink hole.
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Friday, July 27, 2018

#0121 "Fall in Ontario"

This is a back road just northeast of Brockville, Ontario in the fall of 1983.

This is from the gallery at 167 Lockview Road, Fall River, Nova Scotia. I would have painted this in the back corner gallery of the basement which also served at the guest room. The north light was filtered by the back deck that overhung the poured cement walk out area. The light for painting was very good.
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Thursday, July 26, 2018

#0156 "Schomberg Sunset"

Out for a summer evening's walk with the family. Turbulent stratocumulus clouds were dissipating as the winds died down and the convective component of the cloud weakened with the sunset..."clearing this evening" was a good forecast. The farm is owned by Mr. Brown and the view is looking northwest from the north end of Western Avenue in Schomberg, Ontario.

I would have painted this in the Under the Basement Stairs Studio of our home at 81 Western Avenue in Schomberg Ontario.

Oils on stretched canvas - 11x14 1987
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Wednesday, July 25, 2018

#0192 "Stratocumulus"

From the all of 1988...
I once heard an instructor tell a group of students and potential meteorologists that stratocumulus were "garbage" clouds. Nothing could be further from the truth. Certainly it can be a challenge to deduce all of the processes that create these clouds in the boundary layer of the atmosphere but just because one does not understand them is no reason to thoughtlessly dismiss or their beauty.

Heat, moisture and momentum are in constant flux between the ground and the atmosphere within the planetary boundary layer. Upward motion of these quantities typically result in stratocumulus. Each volume of cloud and every line has a story to tell. When one can understand all of those stories behind the lowly stratocumulus then you are ready to understand the boundary layer where most weather originates.

Clouds also go way beyond the four lines in Joni Mitchell's classic song "Both Sides, Now" that was appropriately on her "Clouds" album released in 1969. There are way more that two sides to a cloud and Joni realized that she "really didn't know clouds at all..." Classic indeed and what a terrifc and honest song. A meteorologist needs to do better at least on understanding clouds.

… I've looked at clouds from both sides now 
From up and down and still somehow 
It's cloud's illusions I recall 
I really don't know clouds at all…

I was admiring this particular chaotic mass of stratocumulus cloud looking northwest one summer evening in Schomberg across Mr Brown's farm. Something is only chaotic though if you cannot explain it. Once you understand the processes that make these clouds, they are not chaotic at all. All of those cloud edges are actually three-dimensional deformation skins that encapsulate every billow of moisture. Chaos theory does have its place in science but not at the plein air painting scale.

I would have painted this in the Under the Basement Stairs Studio of our home at 81 Western Avenue in Schomberg Ontario.
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Tuesday, July 24, 2018

#0195 "November Sunset"

A deck of low altocumulus at sunset on the Rideau River in the fall of 1987. Cirrus dominated the upper atmosphere. The leading edge of the cloud is known as a "deformation zone". Those lines in the sky reveal a lot about the weather.

This is an example of red clouds and night, sailors take fright. There was a low pressure area on the way and the clouds tell the story of a warm conveyor belt.
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Monday, July 23, 2018

#0284 "August Sunrise - Bass Lake"

This sunrise was the western end of the "Small" island on Bass Lake within Restoule Provincial Park. There are a lot of lakes with this name in Canada and goodness knows we did catch a lot of small and large mouth bass in those waters. Almost all of those fish returned to the lake. A favourite small mouth that was burnt in my memory emerged from the depths like a huge Polaris missile. One violent shake of its huge head sent the lure almost back into the canoe with Linda and I.

This was a favourite site for a small campsite. Every rock and tree in this painting were as I saw them. This sunrise was from August (23rd or so), 1990. My son (9 years young) was on his first canoe trip with my canoe buddy and his daughter and I.
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Sunday, July 22, 2018

#0217 "Holiday Sunset"

This was a sunset in early July at Clear Lake near Elgin, Ontario. Clear Lake is one of the beautiful steps of the Rideau Canal system. The raft had just been launched for a few minutes before being occupied by the kids.

The cirrostratus was high in the sky and still catching the last rays of light from the sun. The lower patches of altostratus were already in relative darkness. The cloud on the lower horizon were the start of the more organized deck of altostratus. When you add these cloud types all together one achieves a warm conveyor belt and a slow moving summer storm. The sunset of red clouds at night really told of rain the next day.

We were on holidays at the Green Valley Camp which we started to go to around 1959 or 1960. This vista from the beach in 1989 was enjoyed by the next generation to enjoy this very special place.
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Saturday, July 21, 2018

#0301 "Bighead Study"

On the Bighead River south of Meaford, Ontario on the opening of trout season, April 30th (or so), 1990. There are large steelhead trout in that pool.
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Friday, July 20, 2018

#0196 "Bighead Steelhead"

This is the view looking southward at dawn from the cement bridge where the 7th Line crosses the Bighead River south of Meaford. The sun was just about to rise signaling the end of the best time for fishing. Those rings in the centre of the pool were made by a trout that grabbed something from the surface for breakfast.

The world was coming alive with the sounds of spring and the dawn of a new day. A pack of coyotes had been yipping for a couple of hours as we fished in the dark. Some great horned owls were also having a conversation. Those sounds were being replaced by the calls of daytime.

We were fishing for rainbows on the Bighead River in April 1988 just south of Meaford, Ontario. I caught a couple of nice ones.
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Thursday, July 19, 2018

#0218 "The Willow"

This is the big and old willow at the favourite fishing hole on the Bighead River south of Meaford. Several $2.00 Flatfish lures were consumed by its upper branches as I tried for that extra foot of cast. There are also some lures firmly embedded in the root system of that old tree. I got to know this willow very well. The tree also provided shelter for the trout and much needed shade for the Bighead River. Trees are an important part of the ecology of a river and I do not really mind decorating this willow with a few of my lures.
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Wednesday, July 18, 2018

#0420 "River Dance"

From 1998 and 219 artistic steps later... I painted this sequel to painting number 0201 "Gone Fishin" (painted in 1989).  My son (then 16 years old) was fishing for steelhead on the Bighead River south of Meaford in the spring of 1997. This is the same place (immediately north of the cement bridge) where I painted him as a small boy playing with a stick and watching his rod in the water. The same yellow-beige, plastic tackle box is in both paintings. The water was painted so that it could be mistaken for a mixture of sky and clouds. My canoe buddy caught a small steelhead but my son and I were fishless. My son had caught a 12 pound rainbow just upstream from this spot a few years earlier.

The reflection of the top of the willow tree from the opposite shore plays in the water. The spring current was significant.

Art brings back a lot of memories!
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Tuesday, July 17, 2018

#0201 "Gone Fishin'"

From 1989...
This is my son at the fishin' bridge on the Bighead River south of Meaford doing what needed to get done. Not much really. All you need are rubber boots and a ball cap. The stick to play with is optional.

Hooks have been known to get stuck in the willow on the opposite bank or even caught on rocks and logs that lie on the bottom of the Bighead River. They do not make rubber boots high enough to stop you from getting a soaker trying to retrieve your hook, line and sinker. The rubber boots simply hold the water in until it gets warm against your foot and no one really cares anyway. Black, low albedo boots work best under sunny conditions.

The steelhead don't normally bite in the afternoon but we didn't care... it was a beautiful day! As it turned out, we didn't catch anything but we did make some memories.
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Monday, July 16, 2018

#0190 "The Trout Pool"

We were trout fishing on the Bighead River just south of Meaford in late April 1988. There were a few trout in the pool. I caught two nice fish. One was six pounds and the other was a beautiful nine pound rainbow. I rarely keep any fish but these were tasty.

I was fishing on the north side of the bridge catching the branches of the large willow tree on the opposite bank as well as those two fish.

My canoe partner was at his favourite spot just in front of the deep hole in the Bighead River. It was cold as water was freezing in the eyes of the fishing rod.

Friday, July 13, 2018

#0176 "A Misty Morning at Paul's Tree"

Another memory from 1987
The fog was lifting during the early morning hours at our campsite on the "small" island on Bass Lake, Restoule in July 1987. Paul Bartlett, my canoe buddy really liked that particular tree. The location was the same rocky point employed in several other paintings: Number 0158 Bass Lake, Restoule and Number 0159 Paul's Tree among several others.

The pattern of ripples on the lake was a combination of wind waves and diffraction and reflection of those waves around the two points of land. Gravity and the shorelines weave quite a pattern on the surface of the lake.
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Thursday, July 12, 2018

#0175 "Bass Lake Sunset"

This is a sparkling sunset on Bass Lake, Restoule in July 1987. The evening light always has something to offer for a painting. There was a lot of ripple wave action because of the rocky point on which I was standing. This was the same rocky point employed in several other paintings.

The bands of altocumulus clouds might looked to be arranged quite chaotically but actually are distributed by subtle circulations in the atmosphere. The shapes of these cloud edges reveal the relative winds in the atmosphere which in turn reveal the weather. A summer storm was on the way.

This is a skyscape even though the horizon may be high on this canvas. The painting is all about the clouds and their colours and the reflections in the water of Bass Lake.
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Wednesday, July 11, 2018

#0158 "Bass Lake, Restoule"

This was looking west on a misty morning in July 1987 from our campsite on the "small" island in the eastern sections of Bass Lake of Restoule Provincial Park in July 1987. The pair of loons were approaching to make a "swim-past". They were unsuccessful at nesting and did not have any chicks with them. Floating nesting platforms are really required to counter the changing lake levels in the spring when loons and other shoreline nesters are trying to incubate their eggs.

The island was excellent for fishing but you had to fish on the leeward side with worms (live-bait).Our modern technology didn't seem to work.

I would have painted this in the Studio Under the Stairs in our home on Western Avenue in Schomberg, Ontario. Scene location N46.122324 W79.791819.
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Tuesday, July 10, 2018

#0159 "Paul's Tree"

Another memory from 1987...
This is looking northwest from our campsite on the "small" island in the eastern sections of Bass Lake of Restoule Provincial Park in July 1987. I watched a large largemouth bass in the lily pads. The bass vanished when I flicked in a lure. There was a nearby gull that had a pair of youngsters that squawked incessantly for food.

By the way, this tree was a favourite of my canoeing buddy. The large pine had been dead for a long time and was possibly the victim of a long ago lightning strike. There were some other dead stumps along the shore line but none quite as large.

A convective wind had come up and blown my canoe off the granite point vantage point of this painting. I dove in but the wind kept the floating canoe just inches out of reach. I chased that canoe across the lake to the northeastern shore of Bass Lake. It was a nice swim. Thankfully this was not one of the larger lakes on our trip.
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Saturday, July 7, 2018

#0168 "The Soccer Coaches - Schomberg"

A great memory from 1987... full of laughs and smiles...
There appeared to be a break in the action during the school day evening soccer match. I was a parent coach and quite happy if the kids were just having fun and running in the right direction. It is harder to accomplish than it looks. My kids were in red. This was just down the back hill from our home on Western Avenue.

Apparently soccer is the most played game in the world. It only requires a ball to kick around a field. It may have started more than 2000 years ago in ancient China. Greece, Rome, and parts of Central America also claim to have started the sport. Apparently it was England that transitioned soccer or what many people call "football" into the game we were playing on the pitch in Schomberg. The English are created the first rules for the sport including forbidding the tripping of opponents and touching the ball with hands.

The people were all giggling at some story. The chip truck was parked in the traditional spot in the background.
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Wednesday, July 4, 2018

#0124 "Summer Recess Near Rosemont"

Summer holidays... 1983....
This was a summer afternoon at an old school on Highway Number 89 just to the west of Rosemont, Ontario. We were on our way to Meaford late in the summer of 1983...long before we moved to Schomberg.

This school was on a windy high point of land and commanded a view for many miles in all directions. Generations of farm kids would have walked uphill to this school. The trip home had to be down hill. It would have been an exaggeration to claim the the journey to and from school was all uphill. Highway 89 would have been a dirt road in those times but in 1983 it was a busy paved highway.

I would have painted this in the back corner gallery of the basement which also served at the guest room. The north light was filtered by the back deck that overhung the poured cement walk out area. The light for painting was very good.
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Monday, July 2, 2018

#0525 "Shoal Lake - Granite Shore"

This is Canada...
This is the southerly end of Shoal Lake as it appeared during the fishing trip to Shoal Lake from our home base on Bass Lake of Restoule Provincial Park. The granite shore is to the right as you face the creek leading to the Bass Lake portage. My canoe buddy and I joked that we should be the custodians of the lake and that the ranger's cabin could be on this granite point. It would have been a pretty spot to live.

Every blank canvas is another chance to learn something new. This painting flowed as easily as my Kevlar canoe.
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#2292 "Canine Cove Sumacs"

The hummingbird kept me company as I studied the patterns in the sumac leaves. The tiny bird would buzz in like a little jet and take a f...