Monday, October 1, 2018

Curiosity Lures the Artist

Last night, as I walked from my studio back to the house (about 300 ft.) I took a leap back and squealed. This has been my reaction to snakes in the last 15 years. Prior to that, my reaction was running and screaming. My fear was so great that as a teenager I once lept on my dad, practically landing us both flat on a rocky lakeshore. I was sure I had seen a rattler--my interpretation of all snakes.

So back to a slight leap and squeal of last night--that came right before hoping I had my phone in my pocket so I could take a picture. Being an artist has changed how I see and how I react. When I first started painting seriously, I remember driving along thinking about how I could mix colors to represent what I was seeing. What could I add to cobalt blue to make that special dark green that sits on the bottom of a fir branch? On our raft trips, my eyes would always be alert for motion or a shape that didn't quite belong to the landscape. I would walk an extra mile, or go off a trail for a special view that might be turned into a painting.

So a few years back, as I was weeding my garden, I had my initial leap and squeal, but then went into the house to get my camera. Luckily, Mr. Snake stayed around long enough for me to come back, calmly this time, and take a wonderful shot of him winding around my flowering echinacea. I posted the photograph on Facebook at the time, but never painted the friendly garter snake until this past week, when the photo showed up as a Facebook memory. This is not my usual subject matter, but I had so much fun painting him!

Surprise!
10" x 14"
Transparent Watercolor

Other news for the week, "Because Women Marched" has found its home in Klamath Falls. Many thanks to the new owner who appreciated the historical story of this work.

Because Women Marched
18" x 22"
Mixed Media

Also I matted and framed "Women's Work" which will be part of the Watercolor Society of Oregon's Fall Show at Elsinore Gallery in Salem Oregon.

Women's Work
21 x 21
Transparent Watercolor