Day five. Is that really correct? I’ve officially been here long enough that I’m losing track of what day it is!
I must be honest and say I had a very hard time getting out of bed this morning. It was rainy and after several days of not sleeping well from being in a strange bed, my body finally decided to give in and just sleep. Once I got out of bed, I had a couple of cups of coffee while I sat and studied my painting and was so ready to get to work that I grabbed a protein shake for breakfast because I didn’t even want to take the time to eat or get ready. I spent the morning painting in my pajamas hoping no one would stop by and catch me!
The good news is that I did finish my pelican painting. It is officially being called “ The Welcoming Committee” and is 12”x24” painted in acrylic. I chose this name because when my husband and I were here in late May, the pelicans were the first wildlife that we saw and they were fun to watch off and on on during our trip. They were really enjoying the sunshine on Lake McDonald the day I took the reference photo. It was 89° so it was a little hot to be hiking, but it was totally worth it to get such a beautiful view of the birds. One of the things I love about painting anything that is white, is to really study the way other colors reflect off of it. In this particular painting there were beautiful blues reflecting off of the water which was reflecting the blue from the sky. The luminous birds really stood out from the dark water. The painting will be donated to the park at the end of the week as part of my residency sponsored by the North Dakota Council on the Arts and the North Dakota Parks and Recreation Department. I will have prints available early next week on my website for anyone who is interested in purchasing one.
Overall I am happy with the way it turned out. This painting went the way most of mine do, and that is starting off well, panicking in the middle because I don’t know how it’s ever going to turn out and then finally things come together and I don’t know what I was ever worried about! One of the benefits of using acrylic paint while I am here is that the painting is already completely dried, varnished and properly photographed. I will not actually put it in the frame until tomorrow until the varnish has time to cure.
Late this afternoon I did something I don’t normally do and that is completely change gears and start another painting. It is a little bit difficult to go straight into another painting, but on Saturday afternoon I will be painting down in the “day use area” and I want to get my painting of a cute little red squirrel at a good point to work on in public. Working on that this evening will help fill the time, which is good. I thought about taking a hike, but it has gotten quite windy here so I don’t think I would be able to get any good photography done.
Tomorrow evening I will be at the amphitheater at 8:30pm to do a presentation about my week here and about my art. I am excited about the opportunity to share my art and my love of animals and the outdoors with everyone.