California dreaming

I had intended to post some entries on my blog while we were travelling in California, but pressures of time – so little time, so much to see – and a few wi-fi wobbles mean that it’s only now that I’m back home in Norfolk that I can post a couple of the sketches that I did out there.

Ideally, you need one holiday to explore a destination and then another one to go back and paint it. But, who has the time and resources to do that? So, I only got a few quick sketches done while we were away, and you can see two of them here. On the spot pen and wash on a 12ins x 9ins pad of Langton rough surface paper.

Half Dome Yosemite Valley
Half Dome from Olmsted Point, Tioga Road, Yosemite. Pen and wash, 12ins x 9ins
Mist Falls, King's Canyon
Mist Falls, King’s Canyon, California. Pen and wash 12ins x 9ins

Both the sketches were done in California’s amazing National Parks. Yosemite Valley has a huge wow factor with it’s gigantic stone monoliths. Half Dome is just that, like a pebble that’s been split in two. Except that it’s not a pebble, the top is nearly 5,000 feet above the floor of the valley. Awesome, as our American cousins would say. In King’s Canyon park the main feature is the King’s River, which was still a raging torrent at the Mist Falls depicted here. Also awesome and very dangerous – a hiker was swept over a few days before we were there.

I’ll probably do some Yosemite paintings before too long, it will be good to be back out in the studio. But it was a great trip!