Saturday, August 13, 2011

Something New

Last night as I was sitting outside watching the activities of the evening it got very busy. Hummingbirds were all about male & female cardinals flying around, woodpeckers in the woods and a female deer comes flying by in full out leaps across the hill, just beautiful. We heard other noises in the woods as we look up we see something, not a fox too big, not the wolf-dog that lives down the road, too small, not a dog for sure, it was two coyotes! Surprised us, we have heard that they were in the woods but over all the years living here we have never seen them until last night.

The coyote has been moving east and south over the years and population increasing so no surprise that they are here. Just a nice surprise for us to be able to see one or two. Of course they were too busy and too fast for me to get my camera. Nice way to end the evening.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Light Shows

Just a week ago I was in AZ and it is the monsoon season. This brings big billowing clouds, high temperatures, beautiful sunsets, heat lighting, sand storms and thunderstorms. One night was especially full of clouds and the sunset was amazing, pinks, yellows, oranges, reds just breathtaking. As the sun was going down the light show began, heat lighting but it was behind the clouds jumping from side to side and up and down. My son said it looked liked the flashes from paparazzi photographers. Then the thunderstorm started rolling in with lighting going across the sky parallel to the ground. It was an impressive evening.

Back in MD I saw a different kind of light show. Early morning as the sun is rising and the wind is gently blowing the dappled light goes across the trees. The leaves play a little tune and the trees rubbing on each other have the sound of deer or elk as they call out for their mate.

It takes time and patience to try to capture these moments via the camera or by painting. I am sadden as I will be leaving MD soon and one of the paintings I always wanted to do in plein air was the evening sun going behind the mountain, the back lighting of the trees from the back of my studio. I will continue to take pictures but creating the piece as you see it is so powerful for me. The timing is hard, as you only have an hour at most to capture that light.

I did a pastel of trees years ago with the eveing light viewed from the front of my studio, each evening at 5:00 I would set up outside and paint till the light changed enough to stop for the night. I worked on the piece off and on for a month. Some days the clouds changed my lighting, it was a lovely way to spend my evening. I will miss the mornings with the soft light and the evenings with the back lighting. With time I will find new light shows to spark a new piece of work.
AZ Sky

Frederick, MD

Monday, August 1, 2011

A Day To Myself

Still in AZ the weather reports called for rain on Sunday and around 108 degrees. Did not see the rain till close to midnight but good day to find something to do inside. Made watermelon gazpacho, sounded like something nice and cool to have over the next couple of days.  I do not want to turn the oven on but I find when I can not get to my studio I usually like to bake. Baking is not an option today, at least I can do something creative in the kitchen.

Once that was done I settled down with a small piece of paper that I had toned maybe a year ago. I knew what I wanted to go on it just had not gotten to it yet. Hummingbirds, a Mom & her baby, newly fledged but still dependent on Mom. I was luckly to be in Tucson at the Sonoran Living Desert Museum and saw 3 hummingbirds with various stages of babies, one on her eggs, one with brand new babies and the one I did a pastel from, just learning to fly.

The piece is done with soft pastels, toning white BFK paper, using my kneaded eraser to put out the light areas and then going back into it with pastel sticks & pencils. It is 4X6, need to do a couple more this size for a mini show coming up at Fells Point this fall. It was a nice day to myself, a gift.

Square Art

I have heard that it's hip to be square. I know pushing it again, but, thought I would try one of the tree pieces as a square format. It...