Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Mournful Jesse

Jesse has that unerring cat sense that tells him when we're sneakily getting ready to go out of town and leave him at the boarding kennel.  This morning we put the cat carrier out on the back porch where he couldn't see it from the house.  We held off packing and hid the bags and piles of clothes.  But sure enough Jesse knew.  All these are drawings of him peering sadly out the door and finally giving up and going over to his food bowl.  He for sure knows something's up when we won't let him go outside.   Shortly before 3:00 he disappeared, and he didn't come out of wherever he has found to hide until we were afraid he had slipped outside somehow and then we would never find him in time to bring him over to Top Dog before 5:00.  Just as we were giving up, he appeared in the kitchen.

We'll be gone for five days, heading to New Orleans by train, taking Jacob with us, to visit my beloved aunt plus some favorite cousins.  I'll be drawing but not posting till early next week. 

Monday, November 24, 2014

Bovine Semi -Abstract

Last night Maya was over and I never got around to posting.  But here are some things she made:  a stuffed terrycloth mustache (orange), a necklace made out of a sheep button,  and the peachy orange and white sheep at left below.  We now have three sheep in our inventory and hope to complete two more for her to sell at the Delany holiday fair December 6.

Today the farm crew moved the cows from the field adjacent to our backyard to one at the corner near the old silo.  I was able to get very close to the cows , and all the rest of these drawings are of cows.  The sun was very bright and angled exactly into my eyes, so it was challenging to draw.  I decided to just go for cow-like gestures and shapes, no time-consuming details .

 After a few minutes I got warmed up and really enjoyed following cows around with my pen.  Of course they never stand still, even when they seem to be still.  What struck me was how silent it was out there.  Here were probably thirty large animals standing around, walking around, lying around;  and the only sound was the occasional breathing sound or chomping on grass.  No mooing, no snorting.  So peaceful. 

When I got home I  painted over everything with plain water, no pigment.  The supposedly waterproof pen bled very nicely.  This is a technique I picked up from my friend Annie Cicale, only she uses a pen known to be non-waterproof.  My pen was the one I've been believing to be waterproof, but the ink probably was still wet enough to be re-wet.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Restaurant Notes: Puffy Hair and Shitake Kale Rice Bowl

P and I went walking around WAsheville late this afternoon, found some neighborhood treasures, and ended up at King Daddy's for an early dinner.  It seemed to be puffy hair night at KD, except for pony tail man, whose hair was not puffy but was unusually long for the genre.
I had a spectacular rice bowl, perfect for after a chilly walk.  As far as I could tell, these ingredients  combined at home should yield the same results.  There were many, many shitakes, only two smallish stewed tomatoes, an abundance of kale cut into small pieces, a handful of pepitos (pumpkin seeds), and one poached egg.  Perfection!

Friday, November 21, 2014

On the Table at Crit Group

This morning was our monthly critique group.  Here are sketches of some in-progress work, a sketchbook, a work-in-progress built around some eerie readymades.  Always the best conversations, the most honest and essential exchanges.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Gratitude for Soups That I Don't Have to Cook

I keep coming across people writing about the things they're grateful for, and I can tell you that at the top of my list is gratitude that  I live in grocery-store-rich Asheville with its endless supply of organic and non-GMO take out.  Yesterday around 5 PM  I went to the new Whole Foods with the lukewarm intention of buying Something to Fix for Dinner.  I didn't have to go any further into the store than the take out refrigerator case, which featured quart-sized containers of in-store-made soups of such wonderfulness that I brought not one but several quarts home, and everybody got to choose which two or three or even four to sample.  And not only that, but 30 different types of Kind bars---

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Plaster Fossils and Tangerines

When my eldest son was in fifth grade, he went camping with his class from McDonogh #16 in New Orleans, and he brought home a plaster raccoon footprint that he had made.  It's a very well-made impression, and thanks to the little piece of wire embedded at the top, it has hung in all of our many  kitchens since 1977.  Tomorrow is Mike's birthday, so I painted his raccoon print for him  to thank him for it and let him know that I think of him every day when I see that funky little print.  At the top right is a second generation animal print-- a bobcat print that Mike's son Tallis made a couple of years ago when he was a cub scout. 

Across the bottom some quick drawings of the tangerines that L brought over tonight for our studio work period. 

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Big Chunky Old Mostly Rusty Things

Hiking with my friend M today we went into some woods that I haven't walked in for a while.  M is great at finding things-- she's the one who found Owl Man as well as the hidden shelter last spring-- and today she showed me an old chimney that was so beautifully constructed.  All that's left of it is the last four or five feet and part of the fireplace.  We admired the moss garden that lives on the stones, and M found a rusty round lid to something, maybe an old stove burner cover or something to do with this fireplace.  I drew it, topside and flipside.

When I got home I spotted three nice heavy rusty objects that J and I found on our recent trip to the rail yard.  I had put them outside near the carport to rust some more, and it was fun to see them today and remember that trip.  They also reminded me of a many-years-ago trip that three-year-old J and I made one afternoon:  we went out exploring on the UNCA campus, walking around some old tennis courts that had been turned into a parking lot.  We played air tennis for a while, and then J found a rusty thing, some kind of a fastener maybe.  He was very interested in picking up the rusty things, so we made a game of collecting all the rusty things we could find in that place that afternoon.  We found several pocketsful of rusty metal things and brought them all home.  We wondered what these objects were and how they had ended up on the tennis court/parking lot.  J doesn't remember this afternoon, but he still likes to pick up stuff and so do I!  He's the one that encouraged me to bring home these rail yard treasures.