Between sunset last night, and sunrise this morning I went to the camp talent show. We gathered out on a beautiful porch and enjoyed songs, and poems, stories, and jokes. The desert got darker and the community closer. I found myself thinking about the year we lived in Cuba. When we arrived, we had paperwork to fill out: name, passport number, home address, and then we had to list our skill and our talent. Those were two things that everyone should have to contribute to the community. As I enjoyed the talent show last night I thought how wonderful it was, and what talent I might offer up. What would your talent be if you had a minute, a week, a month, or a year to prepare? Think about it, perhaps we will meet next summer in the desert and by the light of the stars, share a little part of ourselves in a way we humans have for thousands of years.
This is Lisa, a woman after my own heart. She has raised chickens in the hostile climate and conditions of Northern New Mexico for years and cares for them greatly. She fights off coyotes, bobcats and badgers, as well as sub-freezing winter temperatures, to protect her flock. Here she is feeding her flock a recent 20 degree morning.
My friend Rick sent me a small photo and the above story describing Lisa. I started with a underpainting in a warm, grey violet because it sets a great overcast mood. The photo was small, so it was fun to fill in the fuzzy areas with color from my imagination. I intentionally left the hens as a blocked in mass of colors. If you have ever fed chickens, you know they never would sit still long enough to capture their beauty (at least mine won’t). I like how blobs of color allow them to move in my mind.
I love the grey days we have been having in North Texas lately, the atmosphere has a quiet quality. As I have been running around the last few days, I have been color mixing in my head…dappled yellow and gold foliage against a warm grey sky. I haven’t gotten out to paint it yet, wet weather is tricky with pastels in plein air, perhaps next week. In the meantime I went through my photos, this one is from Cloudcroft New Mexico, it was late summer and the trees were green, but the wildflowers and overcast sky satisfied my immediate desire to paint yellow and grey.