Traveling by train from Vancouver to Toronto several weeks ago gave plenty of time to contemplate my next series of paintings. Four days, four nights on the rail. The jostling became pleasantly monotonous, soothing as my iron horse carriage provides a homey comfort. My cozy roomette a 5x7foot space is compacted in stainless steel. A sink, toilet and seat by day and bed pull down at night. A full window is my cornea to visually feast on Canada. One wondrous night snuggled under warm duvet I witness the Northern lights shimmering for hours over icy prairie as we race across northern Alberta and Saskatchewan. The grand plan played its light show, energy pulsed to its tune. I witness more magic than can be imagined as time disappeared.
Shunting rail tracks for priority freight I hardly notice as nocturnal dream merges with real, blurred edges I drift, become the experience.click Sound, motion, colour, fill in space I hardly know the difference. My daytime mediation routine deepens, quickened to the tempo of constant motion I notice my contemplative experience fuzz. The edge of any reality I might believe of it’s solid nature become illusionary.
Scenery races by, its projection is pure wild Canadian landscape. Mountains, hardened steel punctuated with amber clouded birch are back-dropped to charcoal coniferous forests. Swallowing this musky vista becomes my feast as paintings nurture my consciousness. A constant voice, “remember this, make this cellular” as I formulate plans to regurgitate the essence with paint to brush giving gratitude for this wonder. Prairie flatness of equal magnificence has soft sage cream grasses that become an ocean of waves, shadows in purple are punctuated with lapis bogs, encircled by magenta reeds. Grey abandoned homesteads half hidden blend to brushes, alders and birches. Decades of dilapidated wood structures an honour to its human history. Birds in massive flocks circle, land and circle again. Cities, Edmonton, Winnipeg fly by, but my interest is voracious for our Canadian pristine landscape.
The rail highway is edged with thousands of km of hydro poles that captivate my attention. I squint as whimsical paintings come to view they are bordered with leaning aged poles and a rick rack pattern of track.
The remote endless forests of northern Ontario are glazed with Fall colour combinations of ocher, amber, magenta become nourishment to my canvas repas. Small towns, rickety buildings, strewn life jumble rusted, weathered, along the track side. This Canada I will paint too.
My musings give you some idea of the painting content I am plunged into.
Messy it’s a chaos of flourishing views yet cohesive borders delineate my ideas.
In my next writing I will share The Gatineau, in Quebec, Algonquin Park, a visit to our family cabin and memoirs of returning back across Canada by rail.
I can’t wait to share with you paintings of my Canada!
visit Jill’s Gallery at http://www.jlcgallery.com