On the Art Trail with Peter Buwalda

As part of an introduction to myself and this Series of Blogs I am calling "On the Art Trail", and I feel compelled to show a little from the years I spent working for the Haliburton Highlands Water Trails, in Algonquin Highlands, Canada, as Senior Trail Technician. These years are forever engrained in me. You learn an awful lot about yourself when you work in backcountry all day. To me it is a testament to what lengths I would go to, in order to not only experience the deep wilds, but help others do the same in an area of 50,000+ acres and some 60+ lakes. This included miles of trails & portages and hundreds of mostly water access only campsites that a handful of us took care of year round.

There were extremes you had to manage through; weather, temperature, exposure to insects and animals, and sometimes seemingly impossible challenges while out there that requires astute problem solving and quick thinking. Out of all of this would come moments of purity, clarity and happiness. The chance to see something many others may not. A glimpse of creatures that thrive on staying hidden. The beauty of it all. The hardest thing was never having time to make art! A friend and old trail partner recently told me he is so happy to see me now, focusing on my art practice; that it is what he feels I was meant to do. I attempt to share these feelings of places and things through my creations so that a viewer feels some of that joy and are excited to see the world through my lens. I invite you along on my journey "On the Art Trail"  -- Peter

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