The lovely unpolluted Berg River is one of the very important rivers of the Western Cape. It starts in the mountains at Stellenbosch and meets the Atlantic Ocean at Velddrif. Besides being the main water source for many wine farms, it's marshlands are alive with wading birds. Anglers, small fishing boats, yachts and crayfish trawlers are seen on its banks.
During the winter rainy season canoeists from all over the world take part in the Berg River Canoe Marathon. In 2010 the 4-day race will take place from the 14th to the 17th of July. If the day is clear, you may want to join me here at the water's edge in Velddrif? We can have a picnic on the river bank and watch the festive and colourful finish to the race! This rickety ol' jetty may act as a lookout podium to find the front runners. But really, by the looks of it I think we should only allow one spectator on it at a time!
I could not resist painting this tranquil scene. The greenish water near the jetty shows grass almost breaking through the surface, and gave me the opportunity to paint marshy waters as a practice run for the wading birds that I must do for a later post. From here I am adding to this post as Sheila asked me about the colours I have used for the water: I start with a lot of Windsor and Newton Titanium White. Then add Ceruleum, Cobalt and Prussian Blue. That is my basic mix for the water throughout. For the marshy colours I used Prussian Blue, Green Oxide and Flesh. The brush strokes are horisontal because of the very calm river. I hope this helps! Do yourselves a favour and also visit Jill Berry's Ambient Landscape. I also want to remind you that Liz Pearson painted the Berg River at Velddrif a few weeks ago! And while we are Internet hopping, there is the aerial lay-out of the river on Google Earth of course!