NZ Day 7 – Queenstown & plein air watercolor painting

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This morning we drove into Queenstown. It’s a bustling tourist town with lots of cute little shops. The hillsides surrounding are full of little condos and homes overlooking the lake. We found a park to enjoy the sun for a little while. While we were sitting there a momma duck and her duckling came by and hung out for a while. The momma was content to let the little one wander while she napped beside our picnic blanket.

Because of the crowds, we weren’t too interested in sticking around in Queenstown. Most of the things to do in town seem to consist of paid activities and not too many free or picturesque options (though we didn’t look too hard for these). I would love to come back out of season and walk the streets.

Below, our delicious breakfast this morning, made in the shared campsite kitchen to give you an idea of the types of places we’ve been making our meals in. Read More

NZ Day 6 – Lake Wanaka & Hawea

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Today was filled with driving. We drove from Fox Glacier where we stayed last night at the Fox Glacier Lodge Campground (a nice and very clean little place. One of my favorites) all the way down to Wanaka. Unfortunately, because of the weather, we weren’t able to see Fox Glacier. We drove down to the parking lot in the rain and with the downpour it wasn’t worth walking the trail in the low visibility.

Thankfully as the morning wore on the rain clouds dispersed and we enjoyed bright blue skies and fluffy white clouds.

There is an endless amount of things to see here. Along the side of our drive through more mountainous areas today were dozens of waterfalls peeking through the dense rain forested mountainsides. We stopped at one and walked up the riverbed where people had left cairns.

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NZ Day 4 – Punakaiki Pancake Rocks and spontaneous caving

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We started our drive down the west coast today. Our drive took us right along the ocean. This side of the island gets the most rain so the hillsides are covered in rainforest. There is an abundance of ferns here.

Once we reached Punakaiki, rather than continuing on, we decided to get a campsite early. We stopped in at Punakaiki Beach Camp and rented a powered camping site right on the ocean.

Just down the road were the famous pancake rocks and blowholes with a nice path leading out to them. I would love to come back to this location and paint as the rock formations are spectacular. Read More

NZ Day 2 – Sketching with the sheep

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Continuing our travels in NZ…

This second day was simply wonderful. We woke when it was light out and I remember it feeling like it lasted an eternity. We spent so much time just relaxing. The sheep around the cottage were an amusement. We tried making friends but they would bleat and run off whenever we stepped outside. I sat in the grass for a long while sketching and a few wandered close but ran off as soon as Anson returned. Read More

New Zealand – Day 1

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We just got back from an epic trip to New Zealand’s South Island. The island is overflowing with beautiful scenery, a treasure trove of inspiration for an artist, and perfect for two explorers. I left feeling so inspired and brought back with me lots of little sketches and tons of photography to share with you. So, if you don’t mind, I’ll get right to it!

“There is nothing like looking, if you want to find something. You certainly usually find something, if you look, but it is not always quite the something you were after.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit

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