Floras Lake at Sunset

This is the first in a series of paintings from our Solstice Celebration road trip where we slowly made our way down the Washington and Oregon coasts enjoying winter storms and a few bright clear days.  
Floras Lake is a long lake that is separated from the ocean by a sand dune - which is what you see in the distance.  The whole time we were watching the sun set we heard the surf in the distance.

I transferred my design onto a 12" x 18" piece of Uart 240 grit paper.

Using these Nupastels I blocked in the darkest values that I saw in each shape.

Next I washed the hard pastels into the support with alcohol.

Using soft pastels in lighter values I began to stroke pastel over the under painting allowing the darker paints to show through and resisting the temptation to paint detail. 

I began to add the lightest values and the details to make the sunlight appear to be really intense.

Finally I added detail in the foreground and confused the edges of the clouds in the reflection in the foreground.  

I appreciate your comments, so please let me know what you think!