Tag Archives: Hoh River

Mount Olympus painting for the Hoh Rain Forest Visitor Center

This is another piece of the Hoh Rain Forest Visitor Center project at Olympic National Park, a very complex bunch of paintings I’ve been working on. This painting is in progress but will really change soon that will be something unrecognizable to this – so, I thought I’d like to remember it here, like this. I like it, the park peeps – not so much.

You see, the view of Mount Olympus in the painting doesn’t really exist, so off I went to good ol’ Google Earth. This is a scene with pieces 20 miles apart, all compressed into one image. Above is an aerial GE view, but the angle I needed was down in the valley, 15 miles upstream from the visitor center but with a river somewhat like this view below. Good luck with that.

I drew 8, count’um EIGHT different sketches, all rejected – and then sort of forced the issue by just starting to paint. Of course, that didn’t work and that’s why I’ll be painting over most of it a gain.  And you know that schedule I talked about a few weeks ago? Nobody’s ever said this was fun or easy.

Thanks for reading this week.
Larry Eifert

Here’s the blog on the web. And here’s my Facebook fan page. I post lots of other stuff there.

Click here to go to our main website – with jigsaw puzzles, prints, interpretive portfolios and lots of other stuff.

Nancy’s web portfolio of stunning photography

And here to go to Virginia Eifert’s website. Her books are now becoming available as Amazon Kindle books.

Hoh Rain Forest Visitor Center – first painting

Click the image and it’ll enlarge in your browser. I recommend it!

Things are getting pretty crazy around here. Remember when I just painted nature and thought THAT was an interesting life? Well, THIS is now the normal ‘interesting’ – cramming the entire Hoh Rain Forest forest floor at Olympic National Park into an eight-foot tabletop. Actually, this is one of 15 paintings that I’m doing there right now, and certainly not the biggest – but I’m betting it’s the most complex.

The blank green circles and boxes will all have tactile objects like bark, or photos and text. It was a bit of a struggle to get the variety while looking straight down – after all, it’s just a made up scene, but it feels Okay, like it actually is the real thing.

This is the installation it goes on, 60 square feet of packed interpretive tabletop right in the middle of the Hoh Rain Forest Visitor Center. The painting goes on that white horizontal space in the foreground. Also on here are a ‘beach scene’ almost finished and the vertical green thingy is a painting of Mount Olympus (except you can’t see it from the V.C. so THAT’s causing a slight bit of consternation).

I’m just hoping this will give visitors a real eye-opening experience before they venture out to talk with the elk and slugs. With 14 feet of rain each  year, this forest is really a complex, dramatic and emotional place for me. Having spent most of my adult life in and around old-growth forests, I sure know this stuff. And if I can use art to infect a few people with the same passion I have for it, I will have wildly succeeded.

And what does this Hoh-place look like? Here’s the river, just a few minutes walk from the visitor center. Certainly one of the most famous rivers in the country, the pale blue color from glacial flour from the Hoh and Blue Glaciers, lowest glacial ice in the Lower 48, give it a glorious glow.

Thanks for reading this week.
Larry Eifert

Here’s the blog on the web. And here’s my Facebook fan page. I post lots of other stuff there.

Click here to go to our main website – with jigsaw puzzles, prints, interpretive portfolios and lots of other stuff.

Nancy’s web portfolio of stunning photography

And here to go to Virginia Eifert’s website. Her books are now becoming available as Amazon Kindle books.

James Pond Waterlilies

 

 James Pond Waterlilies

 24″ x 48″ acrylic painting on  hardboard.
(I put a 16″ image on the web, so click the painting and you’ll see it enlarged.)

 

This is one of those places that makes me happy to be alive – it gives me a sense of what I love about painting nature – the wonder of it all. From Mora Campground beside the famous Hoh River in Olympic National Park and about a mile from Rialto Beach, there’s a little trail going into the woods – and a small sign saying so – I’d seen in many times. I hiked it at 6:00 in the morning not knowing where it went – just started walking with hopes of maybe seeing some elk. It’s a loop trail, and half way along a spur goes off into the huckleberry thickets, and then right out onto a mossy log into this amazing and ethereal place. Obviously it was an ancient oxbow bend of the Hoh that was long ago cut off and evolved into a lily pond, but it just seemed like a staged set. The morning mist was just clearing, cool shadows still prevailed, but deepening color values (by the minute) foretold a bright day ahead. I sat here a long time, watching early morning dragonflies hawking for mosquitoes – watched a kingfisher dive for breakfast.

This was the view from the log.

And when I brought Nancy back an hour later, all was flat and sunny-day values – nice but nothing like the pastel and thick atmosphere I saw earlier. How far this little pond goes in either direction I don’t know, but I don’t think any other trails hit this quiet backwater.

 

This painting is offered for sale as of today. Email us for details.

Thanks for reading this week.
Larry Eifert

Click here to go to the online blog this was to.

Click here to go to our main website – packed with jigsaw puzzles, prints, interpretive portfolios and lots of other stuff.

Click here to check out what Nancy’s currently working on with her photography.

Click here for Virginia Eifert’s website and see where all this started for me.

Calm Corner of the Hoh

Forgot to post this when I painted it – but it’s never too late for new art, right? This little painting was created with me in the camp chair, paints balanced on my knee – glass of wine nearby. Life was good.

On the Olympic’s west side, the Hoh River is a pretty messy place. Just below our campsite was this little backwater. Big water from the rainiest mountains in the United States tear out enormous trees and drag them along, crashing into the shore and causing all sorts of mayhem. A tree could be dragged along in periodic storms for decades until they finally come to rest in places like this, backwaters that stack up the 8′ diameter trees like cordwood. For the next hundred years or more they’ll slowly decompose, create rich habitat for all sorts of birds and animals, and shelter young salmon. Without these big trees in this wild river, the Hoh wouldn’t be as ecologically healthy as it is. It’s quite a place – to put it mildly.

This original painting is watercolor and ink on paper, 9″ x 12″ and $125 unframed.
If you’re interested in a frame, we can do that too. This is the original painting, NOT a print.
Email us for details.

Thanks for reading this week.
Larry Eifert

Click here to go to the online blog this was to.

Click here to go to our main website – packed with jigsaw puzzles, prints, interpretive portfolios and lots of other stuff.

Click here to check out what Nancy’s currently working on with her photography.

A Fantastic River Glow

Sundown on the Hoh River

Sundown on Olympic National Park’s Hoh River.Yes, I’m still finishing up stuff I began while sitting in the lawn chair beside the Hoh River – and why not, it’s a great place. This way I get to experience it twice. And this amazing evening color wouldn’t repeat itself every day. Someone once asked me if I ever did hard drugs in my early days. Nope, I painted. I thought it was better in every way. On the other hand, I AM a child of the 60’s, and, well, you know. …

This ORIGINAL painting is varnished acrylic on linen canvas board, 9″ x 12″ and $125 unframed.
The gold or mahogany frame with a linen liner makes it a total of $150 and shipping adds just a bit more depending on your zone or if you take the frame. Right now, this painting is in a dark frame with a linen liner behind it, sitting in Gallery Nine in Port Townsend. It’s also a bit more if you buy it there.

This is the original painting, NOT a print.
Email us for details if you’re interested.

Thanks for reading this week.
Larry Eifert

Click here to go to the online blog this was to.

Click here to go to our main website – packed with jigsaw puzzles, prints, interpretive portfolios and lots of other stuff.

Click here to check out what Nancy’s currently working on with her photography.

Finding One Square Inch of Silence

No painting this time, instead it was a treasure hunt. After five years of reading about it, Nancy and I set off to find the now-legendary “One Square Inch of Silence”. Ever heard of it? Designated on Earth Day – April 22, 2005 – to protect and manage the natural soundscape in Olympic Park’s backcountry wilderness, OSI is an independent research project that has a website and board of directors – and has been in the national news on occasion. As the website says: “if a loud noise, such as the passing of an aircraft, can impact many square miles, then a natural place, if maintained in a 100% [human] noise-free condition, will also impact many square miles around it.” In support of this crazy idea, all Northwest commercial airlines have pledged to not fly near it. Gordon Hempton, a acoustic recording engineer and author dreamed this up – and I think it was a great idea waiting to happen.

So, off we went in seach of a little red rock that represents – the one square inch of silence. Beginning at the Olympic National Park Hoh Rain Forest Visitor Center (which is already way the heck up a remote valley and fairly free of human noise anyway) we hiked a little over three miles. Past huge trees, hanging moss, occasional views of the blue-gray glacial-fed Hoh River we went until we reached a significant-looking octopus-hemlock (that’s the top photo). The instructions are to climb through the hole and immediately take a faint elk trail to the left for a few minutes, climbing over blow-downs and then circle a swamp – we did, and there it was:  a little red rock on a mossy log symbolizing much more than it appeared.

The whole point of this is, to me, the sad fact that while we stood beside the log and its sacred rock, we heard people talking far down the Hoh Trail and were aware of a very distant small plane somewhere. And if we experienced that plane and were offended by it, how many other wilderness travelers heard it too? If there isn’t pure peace from human sounds even here in this remote place, a spot people actually work at to make pure, I think it’s hopeless. We’ve lost something we didn’t even realize we had – a place we can go to listen to nothing. On the other hand, the experience of just going there and being aware of all this was immensely rewarding.

Thanks for reading this week.
Larry Eifert

Click here to go to the online blog this was to.

Click here to go to our main website – packed with jigsaw puzzles, prints, interpretive portfolios and lots of other stuff.

Click here to check out what Nancy’s currently working on with her photography.

Backwater on the Hoh

We’ve spent the better part of two weeks camping along Olympic National Park’s Hoh River, and I have a bunch of fun mixed media paintings to report. We’re home now, watering some very thirsty tomatoes, yanking out the gone-to-seed stuff we forgot about – and trying to figure out how to return to the West End for a few days more. Probably won’t happen soon, because there are some very patient people waiting for us to do our art-tricks – and we thank you. What? This little watercolor and ink created on my lap in the camp chair while I was being eaten alive by the moskies isn’t art-trick enough? Well, the spash of paint followed up by a dead run to the camper was a pretty good trick. “Moskies” was what I heard a Brit call the evil Hoh River mosquitoes. Pretty good name.

This ORIGINAL painting is watercolor and ink on paper , 8″ x 10″ and $140 unframed.
The dark mahogany frame with a double mat and glass makes it a total of $180 and shipping adds just a bit more depending on your zone or if you take the frame. This is the original painting, NOT a print.
Email us for details if you’re interested.

AND……………..

 

Here’s a friend that came by the campsite to visit one evening. We’ve not seen such a perfect bull elk  up close and personal in years. Had to have been 1200 lbs and not a mark on him. I guessed from ground to antler top was at least 8.5 feet, and you sure didn’t want to stand in his way as he came past. At the closest point he was about 15′ from us, and the tree I was hiding behind seemed pretty darned small. Olympic NP has the largest unmanaged elk herd in the country, and this guy truly seemed ‘unmanaged.’ Whooie.

Thanks for reading this week.
Larry Eifert

Click here to go to the online blog this was to.

Click here to go to our main website – packed with jigsaw puzzles, prints, interpretive portfolios and lots of other stuff.

Click here to check out what Nancy’s currently working on with her photography.

Twilight on the Hoh River

We’ve been camping along Olympic National Park’s famous Hoh River this past week, and the next few  posts will be watercolors I did out there, mostly after hikes in the late afternoon. I could have spent the time soaking my feet in the 49-degree water coming straight off the Blue Glacier, but thought better of it. It’s an amazing valley, that quintessential Rain Forest Experience, surrounded by miles of giant 250′ Sitka spruce, red-cedar and hemlock. The visitors are all pretty civilized there too. It’s as if they realize they’re in a special, almost sacred place, and treat it (and other visitors) that way. There’s a lack of amenities, to be sure, no water in the restrooms, no power, no showers, and the park store seems to always be out of our puzzles and books – but it’s also pure clean ancient forest an hour drive from the nearest stoplight. Wonderful.

And speaking of the nearest stoplight, that would be in Forks – the little bedraggled West End logging town that has fallen into a Hollywood gold mine. They should make Stephenie Meyers, or maybe Hollywood location people, the patron saints of Forks for their gift of filming the Twilight Series there. We delight driving through it nowadays, seeing every store in business and the town full of vampire-seekers (or maybe vampires themselves). I’ve never seen so many dark haired, pale makeuped teenaged girls with cameras in my life. Stores: there’s ‘Dazzled by Twilight’, and ‘Twilight Natives’, and even ‘Twilight Firewood.’ We saw a rows of girls all lined up in front of the closed-up high school, pulled over waiting their turn in front of the town sign, even photographing the Twilight Gas Station sign. Amazing!

So, here’s my Twilight take on it with this little watercolor of the Twilight on the Hoh River. Nancy says I’m trying to cash in on the Twilight Craze, but I know who has all the money – pale-skinned teenage girls, and I just know one of them will buy this. Oh, no vampires in it? Well, you never know. There could be one lerking behind one of those big spruce.

This watercolor and ink painting is on cold-press paper, 9″ x 12″ and $140 unframed.
A nice mahogany frame with a double mat and glass makes it a total of $180 and shipping adds just a bit more depending on your zone or if you take the frame. This is the original painting, NOT a print.
Email us for details.

Thanks for reading this week.
Larry Eifert

Click here to go to the online blog this was to.

Click here to go to our main website – packed with jigsaw puzzles, prints, interpretive portfolios and lots of other stuff.

Click here to check out what Nancy’s currently working on with her photography.

Next time I’ll tell you about the “One Square Inch of Silence” 3.5 miles up the trail on the Hoh.