Well, Alaska was humbling! And thrilling and unforgettable. I'm so grateful for the time I had there. I wish it had been longer.
Humbling for the obvious reasons of the place's grandeur and uniqueness, but on a work level, too, because constricted packing space and travel exigencies naturally limited the kinds of materials I could take with me. The upside of that is that I made do with what I had... and that is a very Alaskan trait!
Here are samples of studies and sketches I made, direct and immediate responses to what I saw, in no particular order.
At the last minute, I decided to throw in a pad of heavy craft paper and I'm very glad I did! It is so sturdy and, being toned, it provided instant atmospherics and drama.
The paper's brown tones seemed to bring out my hitherto completely unsuspected inner Maynard Dixon, a twentieth-century painter of the American west!
The craft paper stood up well to the charcoal stubs I harvested from a fire pit, using them as drawing tools:
I brought loose sheets of heavyish watercolor paper and was able to make some studies with paint made from soil.I brought back soil, rocks, and found charcoal to continue these experiments at home.
I collected wild currants and smashed them and used their pulp to add color to this ink sketch of fireweed:
In a sketchbook made for me by a good friend especially for this trip, I turned to more colorful subjects:
More to come of Alaska and its aftermath!