21 September 2020

20 September 2020

Maybe Some Day?

The Clothespin 2010

In the summer of 2010, black and white photographs were a focus. The texture of the glass patio table, and the smooth wooden clothespin was inspiring.  

Shag bark hickory tree, I originally misidentified as an American Chestnut tree. The 2014 photograph is the one I used as reference for my version of 
Van Gogh's painting, Trunk of Old Yew Tree, 1888 (below).

 The Maple Leaves, 2014
A photograph I use for referencing maples leaves.
Sorting old photo folders can be as nostalgic and interesting as cleaning out closets, bureaus, and the all mighty junk drawer. I feel like I'm harvesting stuff to save, bruised and mushy?...Donate or recyle. If I hear myself thinking, "When is the last time...?" Then it is time to decide whether to put time into the project, put it back where I found it  or make a new folder for Maybe Some Day.

The Maybe Some Day pile in my life is taller that I care for it to be. Thus, maybe some day I will cull the not going to do from the I will get that done.

How tall is your maybe some day pile?

17 September 2020

Easel Words: Hygee, Drawing & the Epiphany

Charcoal drawing from sketches, Snow Geese 2001


This year especially is good to plan your moments of Hygee. We need them.

The charcoal sketch is a 2001 course assignment for Drawing 101 (UVM) at the Unversity of Vermont. I used the sketches I made of snow geese at the Dead Creek Wildlife Refuge as my point of reference. The plan 19 years ago, was to paint the geese in acrylic. I made several ink and watercolor drawings as well as written notes. Alas, the watercolor sketches are nowhere to be found. I remember them though. Thus, this autumn, when the snow geese return, I will take photos and start on those paintings. I found the charcoal drawing in a portfolio with paper, sketches and unfinished artwork. There was a particular landing of geese when one of them was put a hand out to touch distance from me. It was sunrise. The sun barely over the horizon shone through the snow goose's wings with such a beautiful light, I can still see it in my mind after all these years.

There are moments that a person experiences that are between the person and Nature. I have a few epiphany experiences. All of them include a major element of light...glassy waters of Moosehead Lake in Maine, the snow goose landing at sunrise, a cat walking towards me as cottonwood puffs fill the air, and,  on a cold November morning at an open window peering into the dark at 2 AM, and hearing the brutally desperate cry of a creature being captured piercing the silence. 

Have you experienced a Nature generated epiphany?

16 September 2020

Easel Words: What I've Been Up To


                                       Watercolor Abstract, 20.25 " x 13.5" +/-, 2015-2020

This time of year means taking out the air conditioner, moving furniture, and setting up for lower temperatures as autumn slides onto the scene. Next Tuesday Autumn begins. This week I begin sorting stuff, and moving things around, including artwork. 

The watercolor above was lighter, and for that, it felt all right. Five years later, I darken some colors, add tints, draw lines, and mark others thicker. This type of abstract ink and watercolor drawing relaxes me. Watercolor landscapes are my first painting love. Acrylics are second, and everything else is found object collages and such. I will work more on this watercolor, and then it will be finished. Another larger drawing done around the same time, that I didn't quite shine up to, has also received darker colors. I am surprise that I like it now, even though it has a long way to go.

Changing artwork you think is finished, is not a sign of creative weakness. Many well known painters do the same thing. It is part of the process of being an artist, at any level. Knowing when to stop, I believe, is a developed skill like sketching teaching us how to draw better. My 5th grade teacher told my mother I'm a good artist, but need to learn when to stop. All my artwork since then, is measured by the question...Is it stop time?

Breaks from painting whether long or short, always feels wonderful when it is over. Painting again feels refreshing, inspiring, calming, and helps me feel more myself. 

Do creative breaks help you?

15 September 2020

New Solar Cycle

 Activity on the Sun is reving up in the 25th Solar Cycle according to the NASA article. 
What that means for every day life, electronics, as we should know from news in the past, can be disrupted. Frankly, after this pandemic, I feel that disruptions should be easy for humans to tolerate.

Remember the unity in America during the last full solar eclipse, 21 August 2017? 

Our togetherness, wonderment, awe, hopefullness? 

Read the news, and ask yourself what is being eclipsed now.

Sun Halo, 2012, digital photo I took while walking home. There was a way to add a caption, but for some reason, the new Blogger has changed to identifying the photo as a link, and that does not have a place where I find how to add a caption.

14 September 2020

Traveling to Historic Places

Samuel de Champlain Memorial Lighthouse (top), 1858, Crown Point, Upstate New York

The Samuel de Champlain Memorial Lighthouse has an interesting history.
The location is across the street for Fort Saint Frederic, Crown Point Historic Area (see previous post). I have yet to walk over to see the actual full structure, as a good tourist should. There are people with an inquistive nature. Then there are folks that don't explore the history of where they live. For lack of energy, time or money, some places do have fees, it is interesting to this blogger, why there are those that do and those that don't visit historic places.

Write down all the historic places in the area, and visit them when they are open. 

In Vermont, I have wanted to visit a marble quarry for years. 
I search the Internet to find,

Places may be closed now, but one day they will be open. In the meantime, reading and getting to know your area can be a pleasant learning experience. 

Are there histoirc places you have yet to travel to in your area?

13 September 2020

Easel Words: Belly Cloud, Crafts & Wind

The Belly Cloud, September 2019

Out of frame, the cloud is long from west to east. 
The only dip is the break in the trees hanging.

Months have passed since I felt the need to change a name. That realization is a nice feeling, confidence wise. After years of trying to think up a name that takes in both my Boston area Atlantic Ocean homeland, and living in Vermont for over thirty-five years, Salty Pumpkin fits perfectly. I am sure I will never change the name of this blog. No siree. Instead, *Frosty Salty Pumpkin Crafts is the new blog. The summer blog was put on hold due to the pandemic travel restrictions. A winter craft blog doesn't require travel in person. I feel this winter, having craft projects to do will be a way of easying the frutrations as well as the fear we may have to live with during the flu season and pandemic.

Varied projects helps me manage my depression.  Engaging my mind in creative pursuits does take a lot of determination. I do not always succeed. There may be days or weeks when I accomplish not much of anything. The key for me is to have a system in place that provides ease in opportunity.  For example, the cardboard tube sculpture I started early last summer is at the stage where it is on top of the pile of stuff, and not under it! 

Today the wind is howling! I love the wind. Wind is Mother Nature's massage, swaying trees, brushing my scarf around, sweeping bird seed off the deck, and just being a magnificent way for air to celebrate life, like a happy horse out of the barn for the first time.

Belly Cloud

*Salty Pumpkin Crafts, instead of Frosty makes more sense; and, I discovered a shop on Etsy.com name Frosty Pumpkin. I prefer not to create any confusion with names.