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Watercolour and crayon
©2015 Charlene Brown
When I first found the images this painting is based on I thought the mountain was very much like a Chilean volcano (Osorno) that I computer-painted in 2003. But when I compared the finished painting of the volcano in the desert to Orsorno, I realized that, apart from a similar near-symmetry and being in the same country, the two have nothing in common.
The Atacama desert is just over 100,000 sq. kilometers of virtually uninhabited, vegetation-free, stony terrain, salares (salt lakes), sand and felsic lava. The Puerto Varas region, on the other hand is a popular tourist destination, has a wonderful climate, Lianquihue – the second largest lake in Chile, other lakes which really are "the colour of the lakes in Banff National Park in Canada!" as our guide on a Holland America shore excursion had promised, and rose gardens as far as the eye can see.