Picture sitting in a swaying boat, just metres away from the edge of an iceberg that's threatening to tip over and force a giant wave in your general direction. The iceberg is beautiful, the wind is chilled and eerie sounds emanate seemingly from the ice itself. On a shore nearby, a polar bear watches. Fortunately, the animal isn't close to your camp on the shore — yet. But, like the falling ice chunks, it poses a danger that keeps you on edge.
Despite the dangers, you have to focus, because now, you’re trying to paint that scene. Not from imagination, but from experience.
In Into the Arctic II, artist Cory Trepanier does just that. The documentary follows his attempts to capture the colours of the rocks, ice, water and skies near Pangnirtung, Qiqiktarjuaq, Clyde River and Quttinirpaaq National Park in Nunavut, among other places.
There are several lessons to be learned from the film. Painting in a windy landscape is no easy feat; the sun can fade in just moments, so every minute of sunshine is precious; and mosquitoes tend to fly straight at the canvas. You might also come across relics from the past, like shelters built by Arctic explorer Robert Peary more than a century ago.
Witness Trepanier's adventures in the North in the second installment of a multiyear project to bring alive the colour palette of the Arctic. Into the Arctic is now touring. Visit the documentary website for details.