Tuesday, November 25, 2014
Monday, November 24, 2014
Saturday, November 22, 2014
Friday, November 21, 2014
Thursday, November 20, 2014
Wednesday, November 19, 2014
Across the bottom some quick drawings of the tangerines that L brought over tonight for our studio work period.
Tuesday, November 18, 2014
Monday, November 17, 2014
Sunday, November 16, 2014
The little orangey moons are some that I carved earlier today for an book that I'm working on.
Saturday, November 15, 2014
Below the Deer's Eye are some delonia regia seeds, also known as Royal Poinciana, native of Madagascar. Not as elaborate as the mucuna sloanei but also shows up in jewelry, including another necklace that I have. And on the right are a half-dozen persimmon seeds that Pia said came from a type of small persimmon. These are NOT weather forecasting seeds, but very pretty. I drew all of the seeds and pods life-size, so you can see these are hefty seeds.
Friday, November 14, 2014
I picked up Maya from school yesterday to keep her for the few minutes between when she had to be picked up and when she could be fetched by her parents; the timing was perfect, because that afternoon a fantastic package had arrived from Pia in Barcelona! At the top right of this page is a small pillow that Maya immediately made from a piece of fish printed cloth from Pia. There was another piece of pretty cloth, a tin of Spanish paprika, a lovely piece of beaded lace for Maya to make a bracelet out of, two old photographs for Jacob for inspiration, seeds-- unbelievable seeds-- that will start me drawing seeds all over again--
Wednesday, November 12, 2014
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Monday, November 10, 2014
Every year for Halloween students from the college farm crew put pumpkins in the openings, and this year they've left them out. Every day this past week I've wanted to go draw the pumpkins, and I finally made it tonight just before dark. I got as close as I could, crouched down on the county road side while semis and cars whipped past. I noticed that some of the pumpkins are looking a little wan, but that only makes them better. I love the silo in all its seasons and times of day, but especially when festooned with slouching pumpkins.
The other double intervention is along one of the trails that I often walk in the woods. Many years ago someone thought it would be good to bring some goats to live in the woods at the foot of the mountain near the little apple orchard. Theoretically the goats would keep the orchard mowed, and they would produce some milk at the same time. So they knocked together a milking stand (today almost completely reclaimed by vines) and a little hut. The hut has recently sprouted a plastic gnome doll with hot pink hair. He stands inside the hut like he's trying to decide whether or not to rent it.
Sunday, November 9, 2014
I've read that most plants don't really want to be eaten and have devices to defend themselves and ward off predators such as humans: spines, bitter taste, hard shells, poison, irritating oils. This plant makes fruit that is destined to be left alone in peace to ripen its seeds and then release them in time.
Friday, November 7, 2014
Thursday, November 6, 2014
The bell at the bottom seems to be possibly a cow bell because it's so much larger and stronger than the goat bell. We dug it up while digging a garden during 1972, our first year in Indiana. It has a clapper and still rings in a clangy, unsonorous cow bell way. Someone must have kept a cow in that yard when the neighborhood was farmland. The house dated from the early 1900s, and by the time the house was built the area had been subdivided into little lots for factory houses for the nearby Ball Band plant. So the cow bell could be quite a bit older than the house.
On the right at the top is the oldest object we own. It's a stone knife that my son David found in a newly-plowed cornfield around 1998. I was working that summer on the archaeological site adjacent to the cornfield, and I brought the knife to the archaeologist the next Monday to see what he could tell me about it. It was useless to him as an artifact of course, because it had been found out of context in a field that had been plowed for years; but based on the kind of material and the flint-knapping techniques, the archaeologist estimated the knife to be several thousand years old, way older than the artifacts we were finding in the nearby site where we were digging about 24 inches underground and finding arrowpoints that were 2-3000 years old. It's a lovely little knife, and the marks of work on it are fresh and sparkly. You can see exactly where it was chipped and shaped, and the edge is still sharp.
The spear point on the bottom is from a friend's backyard in Indiana. My friend collected arrow and spear points from his property, and gave me this large example many years ago. He didn't know anything about it, and I certainly didn't. The material is a lot smoother than the stone knife, and the working marks are clear and detailed. You can just see the stem of the point where it was fastened to a stick with sinews.
Wednesday, November 5, 2014
Next I drew a couple of my mojo items. The heart has a woman who is part plant on both sides. I don't know where it came from but it's been rattling around my studio for several years. This time it popped up on a shelf with other little things, including the face at the top. I really like this face. It has a hole drilled through it, so it must be a bead of some kind. It's about the size that I drew it, tiny, not quite half an inch and made of metal.
The notebook these are all drawn in has terrible thin paper with enormous strike-through and limited absorbency, but it worked okay. It looks like check register paper or something.
Monday, November 3, 2014
So I decided to allow three and three only prize winning leaves today. The lovely pink-to-yellow leaf at the top right is one of many under that particular tree in the woods. I think it's one of the nut trees. And at the bottom right is a rare example of an oak leaf that turned maroon but retained an interesting pattern of green. Most of the leaves are down now after this weekend's storm. Snow lingers in shady drifts. Time to move on to a new subject.
Sunday, November 2, 2014
Saturday, November 1, 2014
I grabbed the only pen in sight, a clumsy ballpoint give-away from a local business, and the small sketchbook with the less-than-perfect paper that I've been dealing with for the past couple of weeks and hope to finish with today. As I drew the snow-covered lawn ram outside the bedroom window, I remembered how beautifully a former student of mine drew with just such a ballpoint pen. I remember that he not only used ratty old ballpoint pens, but he kept jars full of them classified according to the degree of almost-out-of-inkness they possessed. He needed certain degrees for each value of the chiaroscuro effect he achieved in his drawings. His drawings were beautiful. I have never liked ballpoint for drawing, but I had to conclude that that was just my issue, not an inherent flaw in the pen itself. I still don't enjoy drawing in ballpoint, but I decided to stick with it today and see what I could do with it. (Mainly I didn't feel like walking through the cold house to find my real pen.)