After a short boat ride, I arrived at Anclote Key State Preserve and debarked at a pristine beach. A scenic nature trail led to Anclote Key Lighthouse. I drew several sketches and took photographs of the fuel house before scaling the 102 foot lighthouse. The steel framed lighthouse offered a panoramic view of the tiny pristine island. I was delighted to be able to visit during the reopening.
When I painted the lighthouse I thought about the signs that I had read along the nature trail. They warned that Florida’s natural habitat was being endangered by invasive erotics. These erotics endanger the vibrant ecosystem that supports some of Florida’s great wildlife, such as manatees, sea turtles and shore birds. This inspired me to used green in the painting to symbolize Florida’s lush natural habitat and to add a few palms trees that were prevalent on the island.
Anclote is the Spanish word for anchor. The lighthouse was built in 1887. The tower was fabricated in the north and shipped to the island. It took just three months to assemble it. (www.lighthousefriends.com)