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A Summer Road Trip to the Gaspé – Part 2

More art-making from last week’s 6-day whirlwind car trip to the Gaspé region of Québec!

Now on Day 3, we are on the North Shore of the Gaspé peninsula with a goal to see as many lighthouses as we can, visit this unusual sculpture garden in the St. Lawrence River at Sainte-Flavie, and get to Percé Rock 500 kilometres away before supper. So, sketching took a back seat to photography.

Pointe-au-Père Lighthouse near Rimouski Québec

Pointe-au-Père Lighthouse near Rimouski Québec

This lighthouse was quite unique to me with its 8 support structures around the centre cylinder. It can be climbed with paid admission. And if lighthouses aren’t your thing, this site also has a submarine you can visit and a museum about the 1914 sinking of the Empress of Ireland ocean liner (Canada’s worst peacetime maritime disaster).

The Great Gathering at Sainte-Flavie

The Great Gathering at Sainte-Flavie

Speaking of unique: In 1986, the artist Marcel Gagnon created over 100 sculptures and placed them in the St. Lawrence River, calling the installation “The Great Gathering”. We visited when the river tide was low, so we were able to walk among them. I could imagine how this collection of stone souls would look peeking out of the water or through a fog. Very cool!

After checking out a few more lighthouses, we booted it down to the south shore of the peninsula to Percé Rock. Wow! We reached this town with its giant rock formation just off shore at sunset – the numerous reddish tones of the rock were intense! The next day, we devoted to sketching and exploring the rock.

On the Beach in Percé

On the Beach in Percé

We sat on the beach sketching the shoreline in the sunshine. As per usual, I started the sketch too large so I couldn’t get the entire rock (right) onto the page. When the tide is low, you can walk between the mainland over to the Percé Rock but there are signs everywhere warning people that they do so at their own risk. My husband did it, but he said the rocks underfoot were very sharp and wished he’d had rubber-soled water shoes.

Percé Rock

Percé Rock

Back on the hotel balcony, I got the opportunity to do that sunset sketch of the Percé Rock. And again I started too big on the page and had to shorten up the rock a bit – my brain must have been transfixed by the size of the thing! I soon forgot about the drawing as I started to paint and play with all the colour tones. I used a lot of mixes of Quinacridone Brown Madder (Da Vinci), Quinacridone Burnt Orange (Da Vinci), Green Gold (Daniel Smith), Raw Sienna Deep (Da Vinci) and Moonshadow (Daniel Smith) – water and sky were watered mixes of Cerulean and Cobalt blues (Da Vinci).  It was so much fun to mix and play! And marvel at the changing light on the rock!

The next morning we had to leave Percé very early with an 8 hour drive ahead of us. I was up at dawn and took this one last glorious photo of this Canadian landmark.

Dawn at Perce 1 (880x465)

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