Finally a really beautiful day! As I was packing the finished painting, a bride, groom, and photographer arrived in a limo. While the groom held a huge bouquet, the bride picked up her flowing white skirt and stepped over the guard rail in her little white sandals. Then all three hiked over the Alaska Railroad track, down the rocky bluff, and out onto the beach below. Their appearance enchanted everyone and topped off a fine afternoon.
They call the white turnips "snow apples" at our local farmer's market, and they are mild enough to eat like apples! After a very cool summer, we are just now seeing the sweet, fresh carrots from our farmers.
This is just a few miles south of Anchorage. Capt. Cook tried to navigate these waters, but this section is treacherous and shallow, with bore tides and quicksand. Beluga whales are sometime visitors. On a sunny, windy day, it's a great place to make a little painting.
Many thanks to Stephan Zagrapan from Slovakia, who took the photo of me and my "traveling studio" while I worked on this painting! It was one of the only really sunny warm days we had this summer.
To make this painting, I stood in the same spot as I did to paint Flattop Mountain, but I looked in the opposite direction, for a panoramic view of Anchorage. Even as I set up, I could see the weather closing in. Within minutes, the rain hit so hard that even an umbrella couldn't save me! Even though the painting and the palette were swimming in water, I managed to make this sketch. Good thing oil and water don't mix!
If you have been in Anchorage for more than a few days, you will probably recognize Flattop Mountain. Usually visible from anywhere in town, it is one of a string of peaks running along the east side of the city, and it is a favorite hiking spot for people of all ages. I have been passed by 5 year olds on the way up. That's not to say it's an easy climb. You can see the most challenging part of the path near the top, a zig zag jumble of boulders likely to bruise a shin. The view from the heights is well worth the trouble. This year we have had cooler temperatures, with snow patches lasting into July.
I am indebted to June, Buddy, and Brian Horr of Dedham, ME for these photographs of me painting this piece. On the left I am just getting started, you can see the reddish undercoat on the panel. On the right, I am nearer to the finish, laying in the cool tones of the foliage. Thanks for the great photos!! Lots of people take my picture, but I don't always get to see them. I really appreciate it when folks send them to me, and I think people like to see them on the blog too.