From the Institute for the Study of Light and Water. There are three main components to your scenic view from Duluth, Minnesota: the sky, the lake, and in between those, whatever Wisconsin is doing. These components have been sorted below into color and texture for your convenience. Using the provided ingredients, you should be able to record and/or recreate any Duluth view. Print out and carry with you. Circle all that apply.
Sky Color: Sky blue. Teal. Blueberry. White. Pink. Lavender. Burgundy. Violet. Subdued sunrise/set like a natural gas flame. Blazing sunrise/set like an atomic bomb. Black. Gray. Red. Magenta. Periwinkle. Pastels. Peach. Indigo. Orange. Layer cake of colors.
Sky Texture: Cloudless. Partial cloud cover. Full cloud cover. Full cloud cover allowing sliver of sky at horizon. Fog. Partial fog. Brooding twisty clouds. Washboard/fishbone clouds. Cigar-shaped clouds. Strips of clouds like filets. Pulled cotton clouds. Clouds underlit by sun or city. Towering cloudbanks like Southwestern mesas pregnant with lightning. Two or more unique cloud layers moving independently. Crisscrossing white contrails (gold/pink at sunrise/set). Single contrail (gold/pink at sunrise/set). Aircraft. Laced with birds. Single bird. Gulls making a racket. Gulls in great gyres. Raptor/s. Sheets of rain. Sprinkles. Sun shower. Mists (glowing/not glowing). Rainbow/s. Snow flurry. Blizzardous. Big fat snowflakes practically hovering in the still air. Sleety. Full moon. Middling moon. Sliver of a moon like God’s fingernail clipping. Moonlight coming from somewhere but you’re not sure where. Full of stars. Intermittent stars. Single star. Electrifying auroras. Auroras so faint you’re not sure if it’s a thing, but maybe. Antenna farm. Antenna farm in fog. Antenna farm in deep winter frosted white against blue sky. Layer cake of textures.
Wisconsin Color: Purple. Powder Blue. Pistachio. Invisible. Gold. Peach. Muted fall colors. Gray. Ruddy. Verdant. Sand line of far-off beaches. White line of far-off icy beaches. Layer cake of colors.
Wisconsin Texture: Hazy like a smeared line of chalk. Perfect visibility making details of every tree fully visible. Fluid white fog spilling over top. Mirage/s of floating peaks/peninsulas/islands. Dotted with twinkling orange/white lights. Thin horizontal bands like wafers. Glowing. Shrouded like a mystical isle. Speckled. Patchy. Moist. City of Superior looking vaguely like a torch-lit necropolis. Superior’s distant harbor structure glowing red at sunset like the Uluru monolith.
Lake Superior Color: Mirror of sky. Navy blue. Cobalt. Slate. Gray. White. Brown. Red ochre. Umber. Chartreuse. Honeydew. Aquamarine. Blueberry kefir. Silver. Black. Chiaroscuro. Pink/rose/purple/orange at sunrise/set. Oversaturated with blazing sunlight like a planetary laser defense system. Bathed in moonlight. Lunar reflections. Starlight reflections. Layer cake of colors.
Lake Superior Texture: Glassy. Ruffled. Dotted with whitecaps. Dramatic. Moody. Downright ornery. Snakeskin. Scale mail. Hammered pewter. Bejeweled. Flecked with light. Dappled. Cloud-shadowed. Crawling with serpentine mists. Fog on the water. Fog on the water with the sun inside it. View recedes into fog like you can see forever. Thick fog on the water sloshing around like it’s a whole other lake on top of the lake. Lake capped by low-lying clouds. Duck/s flying across surface. Duck/s swimming. Loon-dotted. Other waterbird/s. Gull/s. Impressionist. Expressionist. Pointillist. Fauvist. Neoclassical. Waterspout. Ship/s at anchor. Ship/s coming/going. Ghost ship/s. Small watercraft. Paddlers. Rain-pecked. Rain-lashed. Rain-hammered. Striped. Glowing. Subdued sea smoke situation. Towering cliff of sea smoke furiously boiling away sprouting sea smoke funnel clouds like the surface of Ganymede. Towering cliff of sea smoke with the sun inside it like a star-nursery nebula. Ice angler/s. Ice skater/s. Partial ice cover. Partial ice cover with vents of sea smoke. Full ice cover. Gleaming ice cover in full sun. Ice cover fully/partially under snow. Ice islands like uncharted continents. Lacy ice wisps. Chunks of ice big as cars. Chunks of frozen glop like the world’s biggest slushie. Layer cake of textures.
Other: Lift Bridge fully visible. Lift Bridge partly visible. Lift Bridge not visible. I am on the Lift Bridge. Park Point fully visible. Park Point partly visible. Park Point not visible. I am on Park Point. North Shore fully visible. North Shore partly visible. North Shore not visible. I am on the North Shore.
Index of Jim Richardson’s essays here.
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