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Engraving & Relief Sculpture on Purcell Mountain Slate Stone
Size: 6" high,  10" wide,  10/16" thick
Elaine Sell Prefontaine

There is no paint on this piece.  I have ground off the top layer of the brown slate stone to reveal the true 'slate blue' within. Hence the sky

Felt pads on the underside to protect furniture for display on a flat surface.  This way one may touch and handle the piece.  May also be displayed on a stand as shown below. 




Moose (Alces alces)


I clearly remember the first time I closely encountered this huge herbivorous hulk when I was prospecting alone on the Mineral Claim by Deer Creek.  It was a still hot summer afternoon and  suddenly the quiet was broken by the sound of  the loud noise of pieces of slate stone being broken and crushed on the mountain above me.  It sounded like thousands of pieces of breaking glass. 

I looked up and there was a huge female moose casually and slowly coming down the 45 degree rock face directly towards me, seemingly oblivious to the noise she was creating.   I always try to stay within running distance of the car which at that time was about 100 feet away up on the road above me.  The car was between  the moose and I, and she was coming down the cliff face about 150 feet above the car.  Well, run I did and just made it to the safety of the car when Mama Moose ambled across the road about fifteen feet in front the car and proceeded down to Deer Creek for her afternoon drink of water. 

My brother told me later that she was his friend and that he called her "Marilyn" because she was beautiful.  



My second encounter with the giant twig eater was at a much closer and scarier range.  It happened  early the next spring about mid-day as  I was following Deer Creek just about 100 feet south of the Fisher Maiden Lake/Deer Creek foot bridge.  Deer Creek is surrounded at this point in shadows by tall spruce, larch, pine and willow trees with much tangled undergrowth. 

As was necessary, I was proceeding  slowly and carefully walking with my head down watching every footstep.  I was walking on the very edge of the creek bank, which was to my left,  when I rounded a bend and had to grab on to a tree with my right hand to keep from falling in.  With my right hand still holding on to the tree I looked up to decide my next step.  I found myself looking right into the face of a great big black bull moose, not five feet in front of me, just standing there quietly in the cool dark shadows.  My heart pounded and I forced myself to back out in the same slow careful manner in which I had arrived, lest I startle and hence anger Master Moose.  Whew!

Ever since these close encounters I have been quite fascinated with these creatures and now enjoy creating images of  them upon the slate stone they so often trod upon in their home territory. 


Digital Photos:


Photos taken from the Whitetail Lake Road near Deer Creek
 in the Purcell Mountains of British Columbia, Canada, May 2003


Digital Photography by Elaine Sell Prefontaine 


First Sighting of 'Marlene'  The Moose

With a hopeful "eye out" and camera ready I was driving slowly up the Whitetail Lake Road near the favorite healthy mineral  mud hole that "Marilyn the Moose" used to frequent on Deer Creek, when suddenly I luckily and happily had my first sighting of the moose.  

I immediately named her "Marlene" because moose are territorial and I like to think she might be the daughter of the same  "Marilyn the Moose" of my previous encounter.

I slowly got out of the car, crossed the road, and positioned myself in a spot as close to her as I thought was safe, and took the following pictures.


Uncomfortable Presence

She sized me up cautiously,  not knowing whether I was friend or foe, obviously annoyed at my presence and interruption of her afternoon ritual. 




Looking For The Best Spot To Drink




A Sip of Moose Mineral Tea


Watching Each Other

 It appears she has decided I am harmless enough.

What's  There?

Marlene hears something in the woods.


I Am Out of Here!

Whatever Marlene heard has prompted her to rapidly plow out of there kicking up muddy waters in her wake!


Last Glimpse of Marlene The Moose

"Ears up", Marlene looks towards that "'something in the woods" as she  disappears out of sight into the safety of the forest.






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"Art purely created, and nakedly witnessed, frees the soul"