Friday, August 28, 2009

Aspens in the morning sunlight

It is my way to say goodbye to the beautiful Jasper National Park. We have packed up and ready to drive away. However, I managed to get up early to drive to this quiet spot on lake Pyramid to paint the aspen wood. What an enchanting experience to stand here painting early in the morning ! I wish I could come back soon.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

When the moon is rising

It was evening when we came back from our dinner to mark our 25th anniversary. The moon was rising over the distant mountain and the lake was touched by the last remaining sunlight. Quickly got my easel out and painted this view almost in darkness in 20 minutes.

Athabasca River

We can not leave Jasper without paying our tribute to this magnificent Athabasca River which meanders its course through the Rocky Mountains like a ribbon of jade.

Aspens againt a backdrop of Pyramid Mountain

Today marks our 25th wedding anniversary. 25 years ago when we married in the far northwestern China my wife and I could not in our widest dream foresee where our course of life would lead us to. However, after so many twists and turns, and after 5 years of separations far and long apart, we eventually built our home again in the beautiful country of Canada! Deep in our heart there is a shared feeling of thankfulness and gratitude towards this new country in whose embracing and generous arms we found our refuges giving my young daughter a new start in her blossoming life. I am sure with our constant reminder she has been cherishing her new opportunity very seriously. She came at the age of 6 without a word of English, and yet by the time she finishes her high school she graduates with the greatest distinction winning a Governor General medal and with 9 high school courses ending with a perfect 100 percent score among them is her grade 12 Provencal English examination a 100 percent finish! We come to this quite spot on the Pyramid lake surrounded by mountains and aspen woods. I am dedicating this painting to my wife and daughter whose understanding and indulgence towards me make it possible for me to chase the vista of beauty in my life day by day and year by year!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Magnificent Athabasca Fall

It is very late in the afternoon by the time we reach the Athabasca Fall. I am kind of debating if I should go ahead with another painting as it is apparent to me that I am running out of time. However, the view is so magnificent I promise my wife and daughter I would try to finish this 18"by 24" canvas in an hour. I splash color over my canvas as quickly as possible with big brushes before the sun light fades away giving way to the dusk of the evening at 8 p.m. As I promised earlier I did finish this painting in less than hour.

Another view of Mt Edith Cavell

Just a few steps away, it seems to me that I could find a even better view of the mountain and lake. A small wooden bridge spanned the bottle neck of the lake where the water flows out from the lake so transparent that the rocky bottom is so visible to the eyes. I can not leave this spot without another painting, I tell my wife and daughter who wait patently while I start a second painting for the day.

Manificent and beautiful Mount Edith Cavell

After so many twists and turns we finally find ourselves at the foot of this magnificent mountain capped with glaciers. A few minutes driving away from its feet we are at this beautiful lake of emerald green with the mountains guarding like a sentinel.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

A glimpse of lake Annette

On our way home we stop at lake Annette. It is late in the afternoon already. I am so captivated by what is unfolding in front of me at the moment and start another painting.

Beautiful Lac Beauvert

After a quick tour of the Fairmount Jasper Lodge I find myself standing on this beautiful lake marvelling at the emerald green sheen of the lake. True to its name, what a beautiful green color which no verbal description could does its justice, and neither could the paint from my palette, I am afraid.

A view from the Pyramid Resort

Standing right at the door to our balcony we can see this magnificent view of the mountain, trees and lake. After a quick breakfast I start this painting right from the balcony when the sun starts to break out of the clouds.

Pyrmid Mountain and Pyramid Lake

We come to stay here at this beautiful resort surrounded by the mountains and lake. What a beautiful location! I wake up early in the morning and come down to Pyramid lake with my easel. I am trying to capture this serene moment at this spot when the Pyramid Mountain was lit by the early morning sunlight and when the smooth surface of the Pyramid lake reflecting the image of the mountain like a perfect mirror only occasionally broken by a pair of loons and a canoe.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Maligne Lake

After 4 hours of driving from Edmonton, we finally find ourselves at the beautiful and magnificent Jasper National Park where we will spend four days exploring its beautiful landscapes. After an hour and half boat tour around the lake, I set up my easel on the shore and went ahead with my painting. While painting I suddenly heard somebody greeting me saying quite excitedly that he knows me from Brandon! What a small world! Yes, I recognized him too as the gentleman who used to sub teaching at the local high school where I work. As it happens that he and his family have come to the beautiful lake for his son's wedding! As we were touring around the lake earlier we all noticed there was an identical boat with a wedding party going on right besides us. Wow, what a coincidence!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Muttart Conservatory

Came back to Muttart Conservatory after supper to paint almost on the same spot where I painted the city skyline at noon. It was almost 6 in the evening when the night light was reflected off the glass facades of the pyramid shaped conservatories and when people came out for an evening stroll around this neighbourhood. The first time I ever saw this image of the Muttart Conservatory was way back 20 years ago in China when I received his first postcard from Edmonton where my brother first came to the University of Alberta for his Ph D studies in 1989.

An Edmonton Skyline

Painted another Edmonton skyline from the top of a hill next to Muttart conservatory at noon.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Busy Whyte Avenue

With the ongoing Fringe Festival, Whyte Avenue is busy with traffic and pedestrians towards the end of the day when people converged onto this location for a pleasant evening stroll watching so many spontaneous performances right on the street. Painted this view right on the street.

The old railway station

Right on Whyte Avenue at the intersection is the Iron Horse Bar which used to be the railway station of Cook County.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

An Edmonton Skyline

Standing high on the bank of the North Saskatchewan River looking over the sweeping view of Edmonton skyline is an experience not easily forgotten.

Monday, August 17, 2009

A view on campus

A quick oil sketch of the Dentistry/Pharmacy Building on the campus where Sarah will spend most of her next 4 years there as a pharmacy student.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Alberta Legislature Building

Finally after over three months without seeing Sarah we found ourselves in Edmonton spending two weeks with our daughter! Today we came to Legislature Building for a tour and I painted this view against strong sunlight at noon. I remember 18 years ago I came here first time with my brother who was working on his PhD. D in electronic engineering at University of Alberta and both of us tried to dream what our future would be like while lying down on our back on the lush green lawn there. I would never anticipate 18 years later my daughter would be going into her third year at the same university preparing her first year for pharmacy!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Monday, August 10, 2009

Sunset clear lake

A watercolor sketch from a summer morning

A watercolor sketch from the summer

Another quick watercolor sketch done in the summer

A quick watercolor sketch from the summer

A watercolor sketch of a view on Balmoral Bay in the summer

Another view over our hedges painted in gouache.

A few gouache and water color plein air paintings painted around our house over the summer

A glimpse over our hedges painted in gouache. The last time I ever tried gouache painting was over 30 years ago when I was still a teenager back in the far northwestern China.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Sunsetting view of Clear Lake from the 9th hole of the Golf Course

It was such a spectacular view looking down from the 9th hole of the golf course. The lake was sparkling in the late afternoon sunlight and after a brief shower of rain the air was fresh with the sent of the pines and spruce. I wasted no time trying to capture the fleeting moment with one hand graping a piece of sandwich and the other with a brush.

Garden behind Clear Lake Information Center

It was already close to five p.m when I started this painting at the end of my outdoor painting workshop.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Gathering clouds over Clear Lake

At the end of my outdoor painting workshop, I stayed to paint on the lake when it was getting cloudy and dark again with the clouds looming large over the lake.