This is another one of my paintings from our trips in the high alpine trails of the Sierra mountains. My husband and I have backpacked the highest section of the Pacific Crest Trail, including the John Muir Trail, and many other areas in Yosemite and Sequoia national parks.
Stairway, 24″ x 30″ acrylic on canvas, copyright © Kathryn Beals
This painting isn’t of any particular mountain pass. I more wanted to capture the unearthly feeling of being up there above the treeline, looking down at the cloud banks and brilliant blue alpine lakes. As Mark Twain said of the Sierras:
“The air up there in the clouds is very pure and fine, bracing and delicious. And why shouldn’t it be?–it is the same the angels breathe.”
Here are some detail shots from the painting. That’s us on the rock, looking down:
To capture the intense blues of the lakes and sky at high altitude, I used Pthalo blue, which is very transparent and has a high pigment strength. A little goes a long way!