Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Found Inspiration

Seems lately I have been in a slump. I have 5,000 ideas for paintings but nothing hits me that I really want to paint.
I went out to feed the horses and found the dark feather in my driveway. I looked at it laying there and the way the light hit it, and there you go. You never know where inspiration will hit you. I brought it in. I taped it to my table and went to town on it. I had such a good time painting this, I did another. The first feather is a feather from one of my chickens, the second, found in the driveway is an owl feather.
My husband came in to my studio and looked at them and said, what are you doing? I said that I was finishing up a couple of paintings. He looked and asked me where they were, and I told him that these were the paintings. He laughed and said to me that he thought I had taped feathers to a board.
I guess I did it right.

By the way, I returned the owl feather to our field. I know that it is illegal to keep feathers from wild birds. We have hundreds of them out there. We have redtails that nest in a tree in our North field, owl boxes all over, bald and golden eagles, and hundreds of turkey vultures in the trees across the street. There is no shortage of feathers that are on our property.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Just a thought...

I do not like to get political in any circumstance but this HAS to be said.

Did you know that over 75,000 cows and horses were killed last week in South Dakota by the blizzard? I am shocked that I am not seeing this in the news. Miley Cyrus made the news again about her haircut this morning...REALLY?

Write a letter, make a call, tell Congress to get off their butts and put aside their differences and do something. Please take a moment and send 1.00 or what ever you can to help these farmers. The very food we put on our plate depends on these people. I know many farmers in South Dakota who may lose everything they have worked generations for. My heart is truly broken.

On a side note...

Someone once asked me what impression did I want to leave on the world. Most people say to be remembered as kind, or a great artist, or what ever...My answer was, "I want to be that person that someone talks about over dinner." Odd answer, I know. But it came from an evening in Cardiff By The Sea, CA. It was my last night in CA after one of the best summer sessions in college I had ever had. I was sad to go. I was walking on the boardwalk with some classmates and a VERY drunk man stumbled out of a tavern with a water gun and started shooting people. I turned to my friends and said, "Watch this". They moaned and rolled their eyes because they knew me too well. He shot me with the water gun and I went into a huge death scene, right there on the sidewalk. I stumbled into traffic, stopped cars, and collapsed in the street. This guy straddled me, pointed the gun at my forehead and said "Give up the secret plans or DIE!" I shouted, NEVER! and died. He laughed and gave me a hand up and hugged me. He told me that I was the coolest person he had ever met and he was going to talk about me over dinner with his family for years to come.
Hence, my answer explained. (quite frankly, I don't think he would ever remember that night because of his level of intoxication, but I digress) 
My reason for posting this was, a dear friend of mine, who is a storyteller, yes, they do exist, was reviewed in a newspaper article I just read. They said about her...She parks diagonally in a parallel world. What a great description. I was so envious of this that I have adopted it and it will be framed and on the wall of my studio. Angela is a true original and an amazing talent. She was the lead in my very first play, A Runner Stumbles, and she hypnotized me. I was a wee little thing at 18 and she introduced me to a world of street poets, art, literature, opening your eyes and drinking in life. She was the mom I was missing at that time of my life, and I mean that in the best of ways. We would sit for hours on the roof of her Tulsa apartment building and eat mangos and talk of the world and philosophy. 
She has no idea that I look back on those days as my formative years and I am what I am partly due to those talks. But that doesn't matter. Why do we need to know how we affect people? Not knowing is the coolest thing about being "that guy". You touch people and then you are gone.
Go make a difference in someone's life and don't ask why or how did that make you feel. Help someone across the street, help fix a flat tire, pay for someone's coffee behind you...and just pray that they say, "I met the coolest person today" over dinner.
To see Angela telling a wonderful story about her growing up click on the following link.

Wednesday, October 09, 2013

What 'cha been up to?

Well, this...
I have been getting ready for a show and finishing up my three (Yes, three) calendars for 2015.
This is what I have so far and 7 more on the easel.
As for sleep, what is that? Don't get me wrong, I am not complaining at all. I plug in a movie, put on the headphones, turn off the computer and phone and go at it. I just love it when I get into this mode.

Dinner Time? Pastel

 Holding Fast, Oil
 Keeping Him Close, Pastel
Pasture Pals, Pastel

On a personal note, things around the house are going well. Despite the fact that my husband has 4 ruptured discs in his back, we have a new horse in the pasture, and the chores seem to keep mounting up. I start my day, happily I might add, at 4 am. Horses fed and pasture cleaned, dogs, birds, cat, and chickens all fed and cared for. Breakfast cooked, laundry going, then by 8-9 get into the studio. Sometimes a little later if something goes awry...which always does. 
We have had Santa Ana winds and the fires have kicked up. We lost power all day on Sunday and the internet all day yesterday from various small fires around us.
It seems of late I have become somewhat of an insomniac. I really stressed out about this at first, but then realized I could lay in bed and stress about not sleeping or, embrace it, and get work done. Choosing the latter has become a very good thing. I get more done before sunrise than I used to all day. Don't get me wrong, I still get a good 7-8 hours a day sleep, I am just in bed by 8 pm sometimes. Does that mean that I am getting old???
The weather is turning chillier and it gets down into the 40's at night. The pool is solar heated so it has gone from 88 degrees to 70. I am sad that I can not swim every day, it became my main source of exercise. With the cold, the horses are starting to "hair" up, and I am in the process of winter proofing the chicken coop. The rattlesnakes are finally gone for the year, so clearing out the underbrush is not so scary anymore. It is funny how your perception of season changes alters when you move from Minnesota to California. About now the pool would be drained, caulking and weatherproofing would be done, horse blankets would be cleaned and ready and winter coats and sweaters would be out. What are we doing? Planting grass. Our courtyard in back suffered a serious blow with three dogs who discovered how fun digging for moles is and the damage caused by...well, you know, that thing that dogs do. So our helpmate, Hugo, is laying down landscape hardware to stop the dogs from digging in and the moles from digging out. Then planting grass to grow through it.
I have pumpkins on the porch and we are Halloween ready. Our sugar maples are the most beautiful color right now, and Fall has fallen here.
Have a great October and I will update soon.