Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Hard to paint, impossible to photograph

Johnston Canyon, Ink Pots, Banff National Park

Ink Pots
Watercolour and oil pastel
©2018 Charlene Brown

If you’ve ever hiked to the Ink Pots, about 3 km (straight up) from the Upper Falls in Johnston Canyon in Banff National Park, you’ll know it’s pretty hard to get more than about two and a half of them into any one photo.  They’re all on slightly different levels and there are signs telling you to stay on the trail you can’t climb anywhere to try to get an overview. So you walk around the area as much as you can taking a lot of photos, which you put together in a pattern resembling the real thing leaving out some of the trees, then paint them.
The signs about staying on the trail also explain why the pools are different colours.  The spring water bubbling up through the sand and river gravel fills the various pools at different rates.  The milky-green pools fill more slowly and thus have a heavier suspension of fine materials than the clear deep-blue pools.  (Seems to me it should be the other way around, with the slow-filling pools having had time to settle. And how does that explain the colour of water running from one pond into another?)