I've been out of town again, this time for only four days down in Milledgeville, Georgia, where three of my brothers and our spouses/partners convened at one brother's house on the occasion of a voice recital given by our cousin, Jeanne-Michele Charbonnet, at the university where my brother teaches. It was such a rare treat to hear JM sing and especially to have so much time together, since we all live far from each other. Jeanne-Michele lives in Santa Fe but spends much of her time traveling to perform in operas, most recently in Brussels.
The only drawing from this past four days on the above page is at the top right, the view from my niece's bedroom window where P and I slept. Spring is much further along in Georgia than it is here, and we enjoyed warm weather for the first time in a long time.
I did an early morning sketch (while waiting to take a shower) of one of the shelves full of my niece's things. She lives in Australia now, and it was interesting to see her bedroom shrine. Later some of us went into town to see what we could see, and one of the best things I found was the window of a shoe repair shop. All the rest of the drawings on this page are from that window: an old wooden clog, a pick ax head, some dessicated alligator claws that included fingernails, a piece of some other part of the alligator, a section of the alligator's tail, and a fish head that looked like some kind of mask and had an old newspaper stuffed in the mouth. There were more things to draw in that window but I needed to speed up to catch up with the others.
My brother whose house we were at makes the world's best King Cake, and since we're from New Orleans and it had just been Mardi Gras, he made one for us. This is a drawing of the cake before he put the colored sugars on top. If you can read the recipe, try it! Only if you try it, be sure to include the two cups of bread flour and 3/4t of almond extract that I left out of the recipe!
On the right side top is a metal cow that lives on the hearthstone of the fireplace, and below it are some of my sisters-in-law Edie's delicate bracelets made of piano wire and gold beads.
Another brother and his partner took us with them to visit Andalusia, the home of author Flannery O'Connor. Wonderful things, of which I had time to draw only a couple. There was a large cage with two peahens and a peacock, the remnants of the large flock that used to roam all around the farm. And on the right is an astonishing carving of a wild boar that was part of a massive wooden sideboard/hutch sort of piece of furniture in the diningroom of the house.
We hiked around a small lake at Andalusia, and I found a tiny brick hut, the roof of which was completely covered with moss so that it looked like a sod roof. At the bottom are a few of the delicate blue flowers that covered many lawns, including my brother's-- spilled milk/Quaker ladies/bluets.
The main event of course was JM's recital. She was wearing at first a black bias-cut gown that completely defeated my attempts to draw it, but I plowed on. These three are warm-up sketches. The middle one is especially pitiful and looks nothing like JM.
I felt pretty happy with the drawing of JM on the left, but her accompanist looks strange and even slightly mad here, nothing like she really looked.
So I tried again and like this attempt better, but it still looks not much like her. And on the right is JM in her outfit for the second half of the recital.
On the left is a final JM sketch. I'm fairly happy with it, but her legs look like she's wearing sagging wooly stockings instead of the sheer black hose she was actually wearing. Switching gears abruptly, on the road home today I got a few drawings done at lunch. I was interested in the man's beard ponytail and also the deer head above the counter where you ordered.