04 January 2015

Your Choice (collage on nujabi paper, fabrics, rice and specialty papers)

 On this slushy, cold and damp Sunday afternoon, I find myself moping around, moving from one unfinished project to another.  I touch papers and canvases, fiddle with the oils and pastels, picking up, putting down, shifting side to side.

Ho, hum . . . this is not good.  Usually I go charging ahead in the new year, filled with goals and promises.  But not this one.  

This year it's more like a total pull-back.  For so long, I've dashed about, becoming a jack of all trades, master at none -- except at my work.  Over 25 years in the world of libraries and information research.  Nothing to sneeze at . . . and yet --

Feeling anxious, tired of the same-old, same-old.  Of course, as soon as you say that, watch out.  Life throws a whammie your way, and you instantly regret those thoughts.

Like the small work above, I suppose it's a choice of whether to continue moping and sighing, or just to get on with it. In a bit I'll light the fire, pull some crochet (my "gargantuan" granny afghan) onto my lap along with a mystery book and settle in for the duration.

So, hold tight, listen for the bird calls, find the tiny footprints in the snow -- the little things of life -- simplicity, a time for a general hunkering down and drawing inward.  Just like the natural world.  

I think I just convinced myself that this ennui is part of the seasonal process.  Soon the gardening and seed catalogs will start arriving in the mail, a sure sign that spring is on the way.  

*   *   *

“I prefer winter . . . when you feel the bone structure of the landscape - 
the loneliness of it, the dead feeling of winter. Something waits beneath it, 
the whole story doesn't show.”

Andrew Wyeth 


20 December 2014

Winter Solstice Eve

winter pond

snow fields

New England Barn

snow rose

North Canton Horse Farm

winter passion

Blessings on this eve
of Winter Solstice

29 November 2014

Remnants Series

a fiddling kind of day -- 

bits and pieces, remnants 

of old paintings, 

trashed fabrics from unfinished 


building a collage 

is a bit like gardening. 

you dig, 


snip and prune until 

what is before you pleases, 

affirms -- 

or perhaps more

like daydreaming,


thoughts flow,

like water and

memories surface --

only to submerge

when within 




04 October 2014

What's on the Horizon?

It's been awhile since I've posted anything. My bad, but summer is a tough time. Life just seems to gravitate to the outdoors, and I'm reluctant to come inside and sit in front of my computer and scanner and post images, thoughts, etc. 

But as the light begins to shift and autumn starts to roll in, to come inside -- especially on a day when it's drizzly and damp -- is not such a chore, is it? So as I started to sort and re-organize my space for the 'indoor season' I found some works from last winter, still resting on the easels, waiting patiently for me to notice them. 

Your works do become a kind of family, images filled with memories of contentment or frustration, eagerness, curiosity and yes, sometimes anger. However, I have good memories of these two -- both started out as something else; both were re-worked over other 'failures' with oil, cold wax (Dorlands) and bits of pastel (Sennelier).

Horizon1 (detail) (oil, wax, pastel; 10"x24")

There's something about the horizon line and bodies of water that intrigue me, whether I'm on the Cape or traveling through the farmlands of New England. These past weeks I pass field upon field of corn mowed down and bundled into rolled stacks, not unlike Monet's "Haystacks." 

As the late afternoon sunlight moves across the land, it is breathtaking. You want to slam on the brakes and capture the shadows and light, the dimming colors of hay and pine against cloud-laden skies.
Horizon2 (detail) (oil, wax, pastel; 10"x24")

These are partial scans of the larger work, too big to scan as a whole.  Each measures 10" x 24" and is painted on a birch panel, which I love more and more as I work on them.  They take a good deal of abuse, as I tend to use brayers rather than brushes, continually applying bits of paper toweling to remove paint, then add another layer, remove, add. During this process I also use the edge of the brayers to create marks that then reveal the layers below, a kind of construction/deconstruction process, and the panels hold up well.

I hope to continue this "Horizon" series on panels of varying sizes. I've always wanted to do a triptych or diptych, and I think the birch panels would work as you could clamp or screw the panels together.  One more note on this process:  depending on what brand toweling you use (or napkins), the brayer will often pick up the pattern ever so slightly, which makes for another layer of texture -- pretty cool!

We are enveloped and drenched in the marvelous, but we do not see.