Shades of greyPosted: January 4, 2023
There’s been no sun in Montreal for many days. We had rain and a big thaw on the weekend, and what’s left of the snow is mostly piles of greyish ice. Not very pretty to draw, but I really wanted to do some car sketching so I went out anyway.
On days like this I circle around in my car, waiting for something to catch my eye. Sometimes I stop at three or four places until I find the right spot. It’s not easy to get excited by the monochrome landscape. There’s hardly any colour and no shadows. The only thing I can hope for is some contrast, which I finally found down by the lake. The breakwater at the Pointe Claire Yacht Club is a subject I’ve painted often in the summer, and sometimes in the fall. I love the pile of rocks, the scraggly trees, and the view of Mount Royal and the Oratory in the distance.
Today this scene had two things that made it interesting as a subject: contrast and reflections. Those remnants of ice at the edge of the water, set against the dark rocks, gave me the bits of light that I always love to include in a focal point. And it’s not often that I get to paint reflections and moving water in winter, but on this warm day it was a treat trying to capture this scene with ink pen and diluted ink washes.