Tuesday, August 27, 2013

The Northern Lights

One winter evening I was driving to the hospital in central Oregon because I was scheduled to work the night shift. The highway was quiet because it was nearing 10:30 pm. Snow covered the entire countryside, and the road made little ice crunching sounds as the car rolled over it.

Then, I looked at the crystal clear, black sky ahead of me because I saw something, a large beam of light, growing from distant horizon and upward into the sky. Could it be? I had never seen one before. But it was late, middle of winter, in the low-populated area of central Oregon. It looked as if an artist had painted pale green brush strokes starting from just above the horizon upwards. It continued widening, reaching higher into the heavens, getting brighter. I wanted to call ANYBODY and tell them to look north, quick! But everyone I knew was long asleep. None of the radio stations mentioned it on air. And I was the only soul I could see on I-97 either in front of me or behind me: it was just me and the only true God who created all things in the universe. It humbled me to tears as I gave thanks for finally seeing  such a blessing. You know, it was one of those life defining moments when you feel, 'Ok, I can die now."

There is no way to capture such a scene....correction, no way for me to catch that look with my little sponge daubers and inks. But it's been in my mind for years to try and learn how to make a very amateurish little imitation of it. So this is my first, of hopefully many attempts to recreate that scene I saw during the winter of 2004, the last winter before we moved to Hawai'i. (And please pardon the lack of snow/ice -- I wanted more of a contrast of colors without worrying how to do shades of whites, grays and blues and the lights reflecting off of it.)



If you know of other northern light techniques, PLEASE SHARE ;D

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