Also seen, but yesterday

The Day of the Eclipse

So glad I took today off! Started out by mailing my August Poetry Postcard cards at the Nassau Post Office, each bearing one of the cool eclipse stamps. Hope they all arrive safe and sound. A little breakfast, picked up my mail (postcard! tshirt!) and then off to paint for just a little while. The flowers were gorgeous and there were happy bees and butterflies doing their thing. See linked Flickr album below for all the photos.

21 August 2017//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Then it was off to Mom’s to gather with some cousins and a neighbor to watch the eclipse. We watched a little of the totality coverage on TV and then headed out. Although it had been mostly clear earlier, there was a big patch of high clouds overhead. We still got to be amazed by the eclipse, just enjoying it in small sips as it went in and out of the clouds. A good time was had by all and come on – those glasses are really cool! Notice that Steve, who took the first photo, managed to get it in anyway via the kitchen window. Good job! Thanks Mom, Jim, Ann Marie, Marsha and Steve for a great afternoon.

Friday Night Excitement

There I was, writing a too-long poem for August Poetry Postcard and… a bat appears.

Let me just say, I moved pretty darn fast. Locked myself in the bathroom while I tried to figure out what to do, having no cast iron skillet handy (family legend) When I’d put on shoes and steeled myself I opened the door and contained it and escorted it without further incident to the great outdoors. Hope it’s gone in the morning. Only hurt myself a little in the process of vacating the bedroom LOL.

Now I just need to figure out what to do with the too-long poem or just write a short bat one LOL.

Photos as Reference

Long time readers may attest that I take a fair number of photos. It’s true. Not all the photos are great – some are taken to capture a bit of light or something interesting or just as an aid to memory. Lately I’ve been taking more photos as reference.

I was thinking about this as I watched a youtube watercolorist show how he auditions and “edits” photos. He prints them out and doesn’t worry about sharpness or perfect lighting. Obviously there was something about the scene that grabbed his eye but it doesn’t mean it is a composition worth painting. He uses a really soft pencil and a white pencil to move trees around, add some shadows, establish where the light is coming from, all the while considering how the eye will move in and around the image. (If you like his video, watch this one next for some amazing cloud wet in wet painting)

When he was done, the view was indeed more interesting to look at and still bore a strong resemblance to the original photo but it wasn’t the same.

All this is a way around to saying these two groups of photos aren’t the best I’ve taken but they were taken to show the scene. The sheep photos have some really dark ones because I wanted to show the clouds. The sunset photos aren’t very crisp because I only had a few minutes before it was too dark to shoot and I didn’t have time to set up a tripod so I was bracing against things. But, I hope the ideas will be useful.

Local Sheep, Landscape and Clouds//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

sunset 16 August 2017//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Someday

Someday, my friends, I will apologize for having filled my social media with scary news stories, abominations of the current world and calls to action, but today is not that day.

Words from Tolkien

Where will wants not, a way opens. — J.R.R. Tolkien

and this perenniel beacon:

It is not our part to master all the tides of the world, but to do what is in us for the succour of those years wherein we are set, uprooting the evil in the fields that we know, so that those who live after may have clean earth to till. What weather they shall have is not ours to rule. – J.R.R. Tolkien

and my oft-quoted:

…the night-sky was still dim and pale. There, peeping among the cloud-wrack above a dark tor high up in the mountains, Sam saw a white star twinkle for a while. The beauty of it smote his heart, as he looked up out of the forsaken land, and hope returned to him. For like a shaft, clear and cold, the thought pierced him that in the end the Shadow was only a small and passing thing: there was light and high beauty for ever beyond its reach. His song in the Tower had been defiance rather than hope; for then he was thinking of himself. Now, for a moment, his own fate, and even his master’s, ceased to trouble him. He crawled back into the brambles and laid himself by Frodo’s side, and putting away all fear he cast himself into a deep untroubled sleep. – J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King, Book II, The Land of Shadow.

Focus…. On What?

People sometimes tell me – you’re so focused. Yes that’s true. Th downside is that sometimes it’s hard to change gears or shift energy to something else that wants or needs doing. I offer this only as a lame explanation of my absence the past week or so.

it’s August Poetry Postcard Fest 2017, the eleventh for the month-long poetry writing, postcard sending group activity. It’s my fourth year I believe and it’s a daily cycle of hoping to write a poem at lunch, getting something written by late night and usually out to the mailbox around midnight. It seems particularly hard this year to do that and other things like painting and blogging and being a world citizen all at the same time. I’ll figure it out.

I am struck though by the difference in describing things in words and doing it with paint and paper. I’m not sure if one is anymore realistic or true emotionally but they are different.

I’ve done things. Painting, words, stuff. I did fix up my brushes so as not to lose them in the tall grass.

I am doing a “secret” project for postcard poetry and feel, although I’m sure it’s not true, like I created a great new technique. All in the interest of getting some consistent results multiple times.

And a little painting, but bigger than normal:

sunset

That’s all for now!