NaPoWriMo Day Twenty-seven

I saw the twists of lilies of the valley coming up by the diner this morning and remembered the side yard of my paternal grandparent and my father’s aunt and uncle’s house.

Lilies of the Valley

By the steps, bound with wooden planks,
whorls of leaves appearing suddenly,
fiercely and unreasonably optimistic.
In another side yard, years ago
these same pointed spikes of green
equally dogged and determined and light
filled a barren yard where in summer
the ancient catalpa would cast darkness
so complete, no grass ever grew
but in April and afterward these leaves
arise, an undisturbed tradition, rising
to provide for may day and mothers day
the most fragrant and cherished bouquet.
Here, in my own yard, they endeavor
cheered perhaps by daffodils before them and
holding within those tightly twisted leaves
everything they need to delight the nose
and fill glasses on windowsills everywhere.

Advertisements

Doing The Work, The Learning Process

Tuesday when I went over the hills to the east, I did two paintings at the Clark. The first was smaller, 5×7″, and my intention was to try sketching, color and value while trying out the plein air “thing”. My paper and board tried to blow away, my water tried to blow over, my brushes fell into the bottom of their travel bag. You know. Juggling in the wind. Meanwhile I was sitting on the cold ground with my little beach backrest hoping it wouldn’t suddenly dump rain on me.

The second I did I moved to my 8×12″ sheet of arches and started from the covered but still breezy Crystal. Man those colors did not want to cooperate. I saw pinky orange, bright yellow-green and dark trees and well. Part of it I know was impatience. I know I should let things dry before adding more color, filling in darkness but for whatever reason it wasn’t happening and so it didn’t work out all that well.

[Note to self- this is why you should bring a thermos and a snack – to divert yourself while letting things DRY!]

This really bugged me so I decided yesterday I would NOT do a scene but work on hot press paper which isn’t my favorite just on trying to get those colors. I didn’t tape down the paper – just stuck it with water to my table. I stopped before I got fiddling with things. Like the bluish color of the main distant hill better. Like the trees more but… meh still not quite it. Will try a different approach next.

On to the next!

The talent of success is nothing more than doing what you can do well and doing well whatever you do. — Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

and keeping on keeping on!