Sunday, June 10, 2012


Sunrise and Trade Winds
8 x 6
Sunrise is my absolute favorite time of day to paint.  In Hawaii, the sunrises are magical, with different clouds every day.  I love getting back into the rhythm of daylight.

You try to paint the sunset, and once the big show happens, you are scrambling to finish the painting in the dark.  But at sunrise, you can paint quickly to catch the colors, then take your time finishing as the sky gets lighter and lighter.

Here on Molokai, wind is a problem.  I have travelled with my smallest pochade box (and still a suitcase that weighed 49.5 pounds) and it is barely stable, even without wind.  Every morning I try to sneak into some shelter where the gusts won't take my canvas and sail away with it.

I am not painting the actual sunrise, which is happening at my back, but the effects of the sun to the west on sky and ocean.  I grab bits of color from my right and bits from my left and pull them together.  Sometimes this creates a problem, like reversing the light direction in the foreground, and I struggle getting the painting make sense.

At sunrise, the birds are at their birdiest.  A gang of turkeys crosses the road on our way down to the beach.  Other than birds, the beach is quiet, almost deserted.  A time for solitude, for open noticing of everything around me.  I am awake and present.

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