The robins are back, daffies are in bloom and the salmonberry blossoms are breaking out, much to the delight of the few courageous Hummingbirds that have flown into an exceptionally cool spring. The inspiration that gets me painting is also here and almost gone, that is the catkins on the alders are creating a colour that drives painters like me crazy. It is a reddish brown with purple undertones in the shade and yellowish overtones where the sun hits them. Because this a reddish grey that is the complement of green, when the alders are juxtaposed against evergreens their usually muted greys become brilliant.
This is a painting I did from a pencil sketch and a few colour notes near our home here in Nimpkish Heights. It is a view looking down the beach that leads to the mouth of the Nimpkish River, the longest river on Vancouver Island. The alder trees visible are on the opposite side of the river.
The sketch is 5 1/2 x 8 inches. In my studio, I painted a 18x24 inch acrylic on canvas. Both are shown here to illustrate how a sketch is used as a basis for further interpretation. I have spent 35 springtimes on North Island trying to capture the essence of it all. Haven't got it yet, but I'm learning!