Monday, July 21, 2008

Watercolor inspirers

Some watercolor painters I've drawn inspiration from recently:
Painting at the End of the Earth -
David McEown travels, literally, to the ends of the earth - Antarctica to Greenland to the Arctic- to paint watercolors. I grumble inwardly as I paint upstairs in our attic, complaining of the heat. Well, at least my paintbrushes aren't freezing on me. Gorgeous artwork that glistens the way you'd expect w/ such majestic subject matter. I love the penguins hanging out near his easel/painting spot. Too precious.

Victor Martinez -

Beautiful paintings inspired by his earlier life in Peru and his current home in New Mexico - portraits, architecture, and landscapes. Images like these create a gentle longing in my heart to one day make my home in New Mexico - plus I'd be closer to my dear friend Elizabeth :)

Jennifer Wu - I love the quality about these paintings. I just happened by them by googling 'watercolor'. The one to the right is titled "HuQiu".

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Fruits of the season

Part of my intention this summer in taking a break from evening classes was to 1) work in the yard and tend the veggie garden and 2) break out my paints and do some art. So far I've done a good bit of the former, but man, it is really tough to get back into something you used to do regularly, and sort of pride yourself in being somewhat decent in. Of course art is both a joy and a discipline. I look at the "Painting a Day" movement artists and I am in awe by their dedication and perseverence. One painting a day. So, after taking some nice shots of the fruit Beth and I picked last weekend on Sauvie Island, I decided I would paint a little postcard-sized watercolor of the blueberries. I decided to go small, and I will probably continue to do smaller paintings because they give me a sense of accomplishment and I can keep going w/o feeling overwhelmed. (It's amazing how I can turn doing artwork 'for fun' into something I worry friend Scott gave me a new perspective on the ordeal yesterday. He said worrying was a sign of advanced intelligence. I like that perspective, it makes me feel better about myself. But didn't I just write a blog entry like a month ago about Jesus' teaching on the matter? Maybe if I can be okay w/ the fact that I'm worrying, as it is apparently a sign of advanced intelligence, I won't worry so much about the fact that I'm worrying. Good grief. Bobby McFerrin, you gotta help me here.

Monday, July 7, 2008

My Garden

<---Before - This is the eastside yard - with veggie garden in center. you can see how everything is overgrown and the grass and weeds are taking over. Everything was a bit greener then, mind you, because the hot spell had not occured yet. Now, the grass is gettin' pretty brown. I'm slowly getting over it. This picture does not show the many holes in the turf where I've dug deep and pulled out dandelions (some with roots nearly a foot long!!!). Notice the beautiful apple tree on the right. It's now producing lots of green apples. And on the left are raspberries!!! They are just now starting to turn red. If posting pictures wasn't such a bear I'd post more of them showcasing all parts of the yard I've "worked" on, and the many more parts of yard that I'm simply enjoying from Nancy and Andy's (the owners of the house who are living in Zambia currently) hard work.

After - With the grass trimmed and the veggie garden weeded and planted with tomato plants, fennel, peppers, basil, cilantro, dill, sage, and oregano, it's looking pretty good. Now, let's see if it grows! In the meantime, I think Beth (my roommate) and I will enjoy the activity alluded to below as much as possible while weather permits. :)
Yes, life is good at the particular moment. That tree w/ the hammock is a giant magnolia. For some odd reason it didn't bloom this year - most likely because of the stretched out period of cold we had this spring - I guess it wasn't warm or sunny enough to burst those beautiful flowers out of their buds. I learn so much about life, even human life, from plants. Our Creator has made this world, with all of its rhythms and diversity and quirks...that I've come to realize can teach us volumes about ourselves.