Friday, November 30, 2018

#2185 "Virga Singleton Sunset"

The sunset was striking. I always try to make time to just sit and watch the sun go down. A Singleton Lake sunset always tells a tale. This precipitation was aloft and not making it to the ground from the altocumulus layer of the warm conveyor belt. That is the definition of virga. It was certainly starting as snow aloft and melting into rain drops that evapourated before reaching the ground. Rain was on the way though.
This moisture was the remains of Hurricane Gordon. There was a lot of tropical moisture in the air mass. The water vapour imagery revealed a continuous supply of moisture from the Gulf of Mexico of which part belonged to Gordon. Thunderstorms were frequent along this line south of Lake Erie.

The warmer oceans were fueling more and stronger tropical storms. There were nine tropical storms active when I recorded this story about virga at Singleton Lake. It seemed that new weather records were being set each month. Virga does not make the news but it can make for a beautiful sunset.
For this and much more art, click on Pixels. Thank you. 
 For this and much more art, click on Pixels. Thank you. 

Thursday, November 29, 2018

#2183 "Mack Street Estates"

This was the second morning of Paint the Town 2018. The town was Kingston and the event was part of the International Plein Air Painters (IPAP) Worldwide Paint Out held for three days, Friday through Sunday in early September every year since 2001. IPAP was founded in 2001 with the belief that plein air painters should have an organization with no regional ties and no border restrictions - artists without borders. I am happy to be a Charter and Signature (Honours) Member and I don't belong to much.

We were painting in the Williamsville District of Kingston. I moved to the north side of Victoria Park and continued painting. I kept the warm sun on my back. There was a brisk easterly breeze and it was rather cool. The sun was bright and really lit up the warm brick walls of the stately homes. I was trying not to get detailed and stay more with the feeling of the place.

For this and much more art, click on Pixels. Thank you.
 For this and much more art, click on Pixels. Thank you. 

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

#2182 "Albert Street Alley"

This was the second morning of Paint the Town 2018. The town was Kingston and the event was part of the International Plein Air Painters (IPAP) Worldwide Paint Out held for three days, Friday through Sunday in early September every year since 2001. IPAP was founded in 2001 with the belief that plein air painters should have an organization with no regional ties and no border restrictions - artists without borders. I am happy to be a Charter and Signature (Honours) Member and I don't belong to much.

We were painting in the Williamsville District of Kingston. I do not normally paint homes. There was ample parking available on Saturday so I went to Victoria Park. I would spend the entire day there mainly painting from the western edges of the park.

The alley way was just south of #2181 "Albert Street Dorms". I only moved my easel about 15 feet. I forgot to take pictures of this painting in progress. I must have really been in the zone. As well artists who had viewed the morning presentation at the Kingston School of Art arrived as I was working on this one. The sun was on my back and it felt very good.

The Queens Frosh were marching up and down the streets collecting beer bottles as a fund raiser. There were a lot of bottles to collect.

For this and much more art, click on Pixels. Thank you.
 For this and much more art, click on Pixels. Thank you. 

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

#2181 "Albert Street Dorms"

This was the second morning of Paint the Town 2018. The town was Kingston and the event was part of the International Plein Air Painters (IPAP) Worldwide Paint Out held for three days, Friday through Sunday in early September every year since 2001. IPAP was founded in 2001 with the belief that plein air painters should have an organization with no regional ties and no border restrictions - artists without borders. I am happy to be a Charter and Signature (Honours) Member and I don't belong to much.

We were painting in the Williamsville District of Kingston. I do not normally paint homes. There was ample parking available on Saturday so I went to Victoria Park. I would spend the entire day there mainly painting from the western edges of the park.

This house was a dorm for goodness knows how many Queens University students. People were coming and going all morning and not dressed that much different from the way I looking in 1972. No one looked my way or said hello. I just painted. The shadow of the telephone pole moved like a sundial across the red brick of what was once a proud and prestigious family home. That home needed some loving care in 2018. I moved my 2004 red Forester into the painting instead of the white car that was there. A lady came out of the house and drove that white car away.

For this and much more art, click on Pixels. Thank you.
 For this and much more art, click on Pixels. Thank you.

Monday, November 26, 2018

#2180 "Cirrus Sky Stories"

This was the first day of Paint the Town 2018. The town was Kingston and the event was part of the International Plein Air Painters (IPAP) Worldwide Paint Out held for three days, Friday through Sunday in early September every year since 2001. IPAP was founded in 2001 with the belief that plein air painters should have an organization with no regional ties and no border restrictions - artists without borders. I am happy to be a Charter and Signature (Honours) Member and I don't belong to much.

We were painting in the Williamsville District of Kingston but I was tired of painting houses. I went to Portsmouth Harbour. The cirrus was being shredded by a strong westerly jet stream. Gravity waves were apparent in the stable warm conveyor belt region of the weather system holding the cirrus. The clouds always have an interesting story to tell. Flooding rains and convection were occurring south of the border while Kingston stayed sunny and dry.

A black cigar-shaped speed boat roared eastward along the shore of Wolfe Island. A sailing boat came by later. They were distinctly different craft. I much prefer the quieter sail boat.

There was a lot of parking available at Portsmouth Harbour. Parking on a Friday afternoon in the city of Kingston was almost non existent at any price.

For this and much more art, please click on Pixels. Thank you.
 For this and much more art, please click on Pixels. Thank you.

Sunday, November 25, 2018

#2179 "Number 2 Almein Drive"

This was the first morning of Paint the Town 2018. The town was Kingston and the event was part of the International Plein Air Painters (IPAP) Worldwide Paint Out held for three days, Friday through Sunday in early September every year since 2001. IPAP was founded in 2001 with the belief that plein air painters should have an organization with no regional ties and no border restrictions - artists without borders. I am happy to be a Charter and Signature (Honours) Member and I don't belong to much.

We were painting in the Williamsville District of Kingston. I do not normally paint homes. I do not wish to intrude on the owners and their property. It was really hot for September so I found a shady spot in Elder Park. Alemein Drive wraps the park into a neat package. I set up my easel to paint Number 2 Almein Drive. The owner came out and said hello and then went on her way. I was very comfortable in the shade of the tall, old trees.

For this and much more art, click on Pixels. Thank you.
 For this and much more art, click on Pixels. Thank you.

Saturday, November 24, 2018

#2178 "254 Nelson Street"

This was the first morning of Paint the Town 2018. The town was Kingston and the event was part of the International Plein Air Painters (IPAP) Worldwide Paint Out held for three days, Friday through Sunday in early September every year since 2001. IPAP was founded in 2001 with the belief that plein air painters should have an organization with no regional ties and no border restrictions - artists without borders. I am happy to be a Charter and Signature (Honours) Member and I don't belong to much.

We were painting in the Williamsville District of Kingston. I do not normally paint homes. I do not wish to intrude on the owners and their property. I always set my easel up quite a discrete distance away and try to blend inconspicuously into the environment. A home is someone's castle and I do not wish to infringe and cross any moat. The parking spot on York Street allowed me to stay for three hours. The parking meter officers ride bikes to check for violations and they were by that location frequently. We smiled and said "hello" but I was done in two hours. The sun was getting hot and I needed to find shelter anyway.

This home with elaborate wood trim caught my eye. The red volkswagon was also very interesting. The owner came out and we enjoyed quite the chat. The car belonged to his wife. Apparently this home once had quite an acreage with it but that land was sold off over the years. The lady who owned the home at one time wanted to remove the wood decor but the local handyman refused. I agree that the wood finishings were quite special.

For this and much more art... please click on Pixels. Thank you.
 For this and much more art... please click on Pixels. Thank you.

#2177 "Cold Frontal Cirrostratus"

My friend Robert P. Hedden was the founder and moving force behind the Plein Air Painters Thousand Island Region (PAPTIR). They have visited Singleton Lake many times before. Wednesday September 5th was the 2018 visit.
The temperature was in the mid thirties and the humidex was well into the forties. Even the gusty winds off Singleton Lake felt more like blasts from a furnace. I had to remain in the shade to paint. I went up to paint the approaching cold front beside Bob Hedden. The cold front was not supposed to arrive until after midnight but the clues were already in the midday sky.

The warm conveyor belt has an important component that sweeps northward ahead of the surface cold front. The cirrostratus was the only clue that a cold front was poised to the north. Of course anything had to be cooler than the blast furnace breeze in the warm sector. Towering cumulus occasionally shot upward into the atmosphere well to the north. A large thunderstorm did get going but it remained 100 km to the north before turning to the southeast. There was lots of wind shear in the unstable environment. Severe thunderstorm watches and warnings were out for these storms.

Linda and I watched them sparking away to the north after sunset. They all missed Singleton. You could count the rain drops.

I was still using the oils from the Dumoine River Trip of early August and they were getting even thicker under the heat.

For this and much more art... click on Pixels. Thank you.
 For this and much more art...

Thursday, November 22, 2018

#2176 "Hidden Red Chairs"

My friend Robert P. Hedden was the founder and moving force behind the Plein Air Painters Thousand Island Region (PAPTIR). They have visited Singleton Lake many times before. Wednesday September 5th was the 2018 visit. The temperature was in the mid thirties and the humidex was well into the forties. Even the breeze off Singleton Lake felt more like a blast furnace. I had to remain in the shade to paint of the large soft maple. The top of this tree is dead. Cavities in the top of the main stem have been used by pileated woodpeckers and goodness knows what other creatures - maybe even grey rat snakes. I was still using the oils from the Dumoine River Trip of early August and they were getting thicker under the heat.

This is one of my favourite views across the marble ledge pointing into Jim Day Rapids. The red chairs are as comfortable as they look. We all need to sit down more and just watch the world and the water flow by.

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 For this and much more art, please click on Pixels. Thank you so much.

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

#2175 "Jim Day Lily Pads"

My friend Robert P. Hedden was the founder and moving force behind the Plein Air Painters Thousand Island Region (PAPTIR). They have visited Singleton Lake many times before. Wednesday September 5th was the 2018 visit.
It is not easy to guide a group of artists but it is always fun and Robert is good at it. Every one scatters and finds inspiration in the unlikeliest of places. Let it be... let it be. That exercise has been compared to herding cats. We had a small group composed of Bob, Jan, Linda, Dave and Dianne. We had a post lunch pontoon boat ride as well. Life is good.

While I waited for our guests to arrive I set up on the edge of Jim Day Rapids to paint something simple. I was still using the oils from the Dumoine River Trip of early August. The lily pads were still healthy. I thought of Monet as I painted and waited for the group to arrive. On a previous visit we were also visited by three large black rat snakes at exactly this location. The ladies were all quite scared of snakes and remembered the encounter very well. After they had left for the day I did see a large northern water snake.

For this and much more art, please click on Pixels. Thank you.
 For this and much more art, please click on Pixels. Thank you.

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

#2174 "Robinson Lake Turbulent Stratocumulus"

I found another box of panels as I was arranging the contents in the car for the trip home from the Dumoine. The top panel was an elongated landscape shape fashioned from the rough side of an old sheet of Masonite. I took it down to the beach on Robinson Lake. The tent and tarps would have some more time to dry. I was in no hurry.

It was late morning but the larger fish were still charging the shallow water for the minnows. The flurry of activity and splashes in the water always caught me by surprise.

The landscape turned into a skyscape. Streets of dark turbulent stratocumulus were embedded in the northwesterly flow. Stratocumulus clouds have character and can reveal a lot about the meteorology of the day. The wind had not yet made it down to the surface of the lake through the nocturnal inversion. The morning plein air session must end at noon. The light changes dramatically at midday and no one can keep up with the speed of light.

I loaded the nearly dry tent and tarps and was on the road for the almost four hour drive home by 12:15 pm. It had been a fun and productive visit to the Dumoine and DRAW.

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 For this and much more art, please click on Pixels. Thank you.

Monday, November 19, 2018

#2173 "CPAWS Campfire"

The DRAW camp fire area was quiet. I had already picked up all traces that a lot of people had spent a lot of time there. The two sitting logs remained but that was it. I lit a small fire and painted away in the clearing. The trees were backlit by the rising sun. The trees and logs cast shadows long across the scene. I included the bathroom sign nailed to the tree. The thunder box was the bathroom. The fireplace rocks were painted as I saw them. Every camper would rearrange these stones a bit to suit their purposes.

I was in no hurry to leave and it gave me a chance to hang my tent and tarps to allow them to dry out a bit. Those overnight thunderstorms were the heaviest and most severe of the week. Someone had conveniently stretched a heavy nylon rope between some trees. The rope was the only trace of humans left behind when I headed down the road.

The heavy thunderstorms of the past week had almost washed out the road in a few locations. It was certainly much rougher on the way out. It took an hour to go the 35 kilometres or so and that was only because the roads improved dramatically the closer to Swisha that you got. On the rough sections of the road I suspect the mean speed might have been 15 kph.

I used a lot of paint on the smooth and slippery surface. For this and much more art, please click on Pixels.
 For this and much more art, please click on Pixels.

Sunday, November 18, 2018

#2172 "Robinson Lake Morning Cloud"

The bald eagle flew by as I painted but this time he was headed upstream. More large fish charged the shallow waters causing the minnow to scatter. Sometimes it startled me. In the quiet I heard what might have been a merlin. The merlin is a small falcon about the same size as a blue jay. They are fast flyers.
Apparently merlins have a voracious appetite. It has been estimated that during the breeding season a family of merlins consumes 24 kilograms of prey. That is a lot of birds when one considers that the bulk of their diet is small songbirds that weigh only a few ounces each. When hunting, the merlin typically flies over open forest or grassland at high speed (up to 70 km/h), flushing out birds and snatching individuals which react too slowly. Merlins are extremely agile in the air, able to make remarkably rapid changes of direction to keep up with their quarry. Alternatively, merlins may hunt by watching for activity from a perch and then launching into rapid flight from there. The open water between islands and across rivers and lakes explains why merlins often nest near water. Merlins also feed on insects, especially in migration when they often grab dragonflies or butterflies out of the air. These are snacks which they eat in flight without even slowing down.

I cleared my throat like Buddy Holly did in his preparation for "True Love Ways". They caught this act on the master tapes. Something that sounded quite large retreated hastily along the waterfront and headed away from me downstream into the thick brush. I never saw what it was.

Patches of fog lingered in the Dumoine valley while tentacles of mist spiralled upward from the forest canopy. The low cloud was headed toward the southeast. The upper cloud was headed northeastward. There was a lot of wind shear in the atmosphere. We were still going to remain within the hot and humid air mass at least for another day.

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 For this and much more art, please click Pixels. Thank you.

Saturday, November 17, 2018

#2171 "Robinson Lake Thunderstorm Sunrise"

People had arrived in the cottage on Robinson Lake the previous evening. They were not up yet when I started to paint. The overnight thunderstorms were probably the most intense of the past week. The torrential rain shook my little tent. I do not remember much in the way of wind but apparently there were tornado warnings issued for the area. The wind near a tornado is nothing compared to the wind within a tornado. I had a great sleep and was up and ready to paint with the sun.

The best vista was down at the sand beach on Robinson Lake. The thunderstorms were still on the eastern horizon. I enlarged them in the painting to get a proper composition but otherwise the colours of the sunrise were exactly as I saw them. The sun was just clearing the anvil of the thunderstorm when I was finishing up. Some leaden altocumulus castellanus were sending shafts of virga toward the ground. The rain drops did not make it to the lake which remained a near perfect mirror aside from the wisps pf mist that drifted slowly around.

Large fish frequently rushed the shallows chasing down minnows for their breakfast.

Mark Patton gave me this canvas for a coffee since he knew I was getting low on surfaces to paint on. The outer edge of this particular canvas stretcher frame has been rounded. The concept is to relieve the strain and pressure on the canvas as it is pulled around to the side and back. This style is referred to as the euro stretcher and is designed to accommodate conservators and restorers in their efforts. From an artistic perspective the painting is more difficult to photograph right to the edges. Essentially the image must be cropped so that the rounded edges are removed. I paint right to the outer edge and as a result tend to prefer the sharper edges on the canvas stretcher bars.

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 For this and much more art, click on Pixels. Thank you.

Friday, November 16, 2018

#2170 "Dumoine La Chute Portage"

Canoe trippers would not want to miss this take out at the head of the Grande Chute. The two rocks on the shore marked the start of the portage. The rapids on the right side of the painting were the point of no return.

The clouds told the story of strong southwesterly winds. Horizontal rolls were spinning the clouds into horizontal vortices. The circulations were complex but without the cloud they would have been invisible. There where some showers associated with the bright white clouds that where further to the north. The rain started just as I finished. The rain continued and slowly got heavier until torrential rain with thunder and lightning lulled me off to sleep. It was a good night to retire early after a relaxing au natural swim in Robinson Lake. Apparently there was even a tornado warning for the Dumoine. My camp stayed mainly dry.

I actually really liked the brighter colours that resulted from working on an untinted canvas. I should do this more often. My artist friend Mark Patton gave me this canvas for a coffee since he knew I was getting low of surfaces to paint on.

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 For this and much more art, please click on Pixels.

#2238 "Warm Sector Winds"

Strong southerly winds were ushering the stratocumulus across the lake. Turbulent mixing of the moist air mass resulted in uneven and rag...