Mountain Bluebird, Yellowstone National Park Watercolor
Breakfast at Colter Bay Campsite
Camping at Colter Bay, WY. May 23, 2013
For most of the day we were driving around the northern part of Yellowstone National Park near Mamoth Springs. There is so much to see in the park that you really could use a week just to cover the main sights. That afternoon we headed south to Grand Teton National Park which is just ten miles south of the Yellowstone southern park border.
My first view of the forty mile long Teton Range was breath taking. I thought that we might see some interesting and beautiful places on this first leg of our journey to Boston but this was amazing.
The watercolor painting I have done of the Mountain Bluebird was painted from a photograph that Lyn took. We found that these birds were elusive and it was difficult to just get a good photo let alone sketch this bird from real life. The sketch of our campsite is typical of my loose sketch book style. This style of loose drawing is a lot of fun and offers a nice change from doing a more formal watercolor.
Old Faithful, Yellowstone National Park
Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park
West Yellowstone, WY, USA May 22,2013
As we drove in from the west side of Yellowstone National Park, we passed Tilted Lake and encountered our first bison. The bison are grazing near the road and don’t pay too much attention to you.
That night we camped at Madison Campground at 6,800 ft. We set up camp early and drove to Lower, Midway and Upper Geyser Basins. The board walks offer a chance to get close to the geysers and feel their heat and steam.
From am artistic point of view I was amazed by the variation in colors. I found that painting some of the thermals offered the opportunity to work with some colors that I don’t always see painting the Canadian landscape. Some of the thermal pools have this beautiful turquoise color a long with bright oranges and violet.
As a final thought for today I have found that so far this trip has offered a lot of different potential scenes for me to paint and sketch. I think it is good to try painting subject matter that is new or out side of my comfort zone. The sketch of Old Faithful was my first attempt at painting a geyser.
Hoodoo’s at Writing-on-Stone, Watercolour
Mule Deer Writing-on-Stone Provincial Park, Watercolour and pencil
Writing-on-Stone Provincial Park May 19, 2013
Leaving Banff, Alberta; we drove to Calgary and then south to Milk River, which is very close to the US. border and Montana. This would be our last stop in Canada before heading south to Yellow Stone National Park.
Writing-on-Stone Provincial Park is a small nature preserve (18 sq. km.) that straddles the Milk River. It contains the greatest concentration of rock art on the North American Great Plains. We spent the night camped here near the river. The next morning I was up early to paint and managed to do a couple of good sketches. The Mule Deer that live in the camp ground make easy subjects as they allow you to get reasonably close.
I was also fascinated by the sand stone formations called “Hoodoo’s” that make an interesting subject to paint and sketch. Some of these formations look like other worldly creatures. The Blackfoot Peoples considered this place very sacred and were probably the ones who created many of the rock carvings and paintings.
Road side stop near Revelstoke.
Looking up stream from the Natural Bridge in Yoho National Park
Driving the Trans Canada Highway May 17, 2013
The first real day of travel took us from Richmond, BC. to Revelstoke, BC. along the Trans Canada Highway. It felt a bit surreal leaving Richmond and traveling east knowing that if we continued to travel east we would be home again in Vancouver in eight months time.
After driving all morning we stopped in the afternoon at the town of Salmon Arm. We visited the cemetery there to pay our respects to Lyn’s grandparents and great grandmother. For us it seemed appropriate to start the trip by paying our respects and thanking them for setting the ground work for the life we lead today.
Our first night of the trip was spent camping in Revelstoke at the KOA camp ground.
Richmond, BC., Canada May 16, 2013
Having left our mountain home in Squamish, BC. we drove down to Richmond, BC., just outside of Vancouver near the Frazer River. We spent a couple of days here to make sure that we had everything we needed for the long trip ahead.
We had some time on our hands and so we took advantage of the opportunity to be tourists in our own back yard. We went to the nearby fishing village of Steveston where I did some sketches of the water front. Steveston is known for its commercial fishing port and was historically a salmon canning port.
The Start, Day 1, Leaving Home May 15, 2013
Three years ago my wife Lyn and I did a trip around the world. As a way to do justice to an eight month back packing adventure and to clarify the story of our journey I am going to post paintings and sketch’s starting from the beginning of our journey back in Squamish, BC, Canada.
Lyn and I had been planning this great adventure for some time and so when we sold our house in Squamish we had a big garage sale and put the remainder of our belongings into storage. With that done, we loaded up the car with camping gear with the plan of driving across the United States to Boston as the first leg of our trip.
Here is the story of our trip in sketch’s and paintings. Driving down the Sea to Sky highway from Whistler on our way to Vancouver, BC. we spotted a mother black bear and her cubs. We thought this was a great omen of things to come and a great way to leave our mountain home.
Follow us a we go back through a trip that took us to 96 cities and 15 countries on our eight month journey.