Monday, August 10, 2009

Elkhorn Creek Leisure

My newest pieces are focused on Elkhorn Creek which runs through central Kentucky and I think it is one of the most beautiful creeks in the area. On a leisurely July afternoon my husband and I rented a canoe from Canoe Kentucky of Peaks Mill, KY and paddled Elkhorn Creek. Glenn fished and I took lots of photographs and did some quick pen and ink sketches.

The water was just right for an easy, no hassle float. I like still water with crisp reflections - no whitewater for me and my Canon XTi digital camera, thank you!

"Elkhorn Backlighting 1" was created on LaCarte pastel board. It's only 6"x6" but still captures the contrast of light and shadow.

"Elkhorn Backlighting 2" was created from the same reference photograph but I used Kitty Wallis sanded paper with an oil wash for the underpainting. Can you tell the difference in the two techniques?

"Elkhorn Sycamore" is a tree that I have painted many times before and I never get enough of this graceful image. This time the piece is square and very small -- 6"x6". Recently a summer downpour raised the water level in the creek by 6 feet and I wondered if my leaning sycamore has survived? It seems to lean more each year.

"Elkhorn Fishing" was inspired by not only the red-shirted fisherman but the beautiful tall trees that grow along the creek bank. The fellows who were fishing in the same area where we were canoeing not only were using a red canoe from Canoe Kentucky but also wore red T-shirts. A spot of red in the overwhelming green of summer is always a welcome sight. Thanks, guys!

If you want to have a fun day on the creek, just contact Canoe Kentucky at and they'll set you up with a fun 6 mile, or longer if you like, trip on the creek in a canoe or a kayak.

Just so you don't think I've gone completely mad over the Elkhorn, I've included one of my new landscapes from my Scenic Highway backroad series. This piece is from a small road off Frankfort Pike and I wandered around throughout that area that I'm not sure now which road I was on. The evening light creates a glow of color that permeates the landscape.

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