The Great Lady of Paris, France, the World

April, The Hudson, 2019, Archival Digital Print

There is gloom over the loss of Notre Dame. These gifts of civilization stand, we assume their presence will continue until the end of time.  But, it is gone, or so badly damaged that even though they may rebuild the work and give us a look alike, it will not be the fruit of 800 years nor the gift of so many artisans and generations through time.

It is a heartache unlike those for people or pets we loved. This is different. What it stands for is deeper, belonging beyond the personal.  As we watched the horrific scene, the reportage was hard to hear, these rip n’ read ignorant broadcasters who commented on the flames with the same tone they would for a cooking event.  That in itself, spoke to the loss of cultural understanding, comprehension of history, and in a time of Trump it coincided with the devastation of values the right-wing brings us.  Science, Research, all under attack.  The antivaxxer nitwits who would rather have their children die than believe what has been shown efficacious to their health.  Idiots who think that global warming is a plot.  And the Great Lady of Paris turns to cinders.  Centuries in the building and destroyed in minutes — like what is happening in the US as the right wing barbarians sack what we build and treasure.  A gloomy time.

 

The Day’s Rhythm

Waiting for the First Train, Fog, 2019, Archival Digital Print

When it’s cold enough and moist enough but not yet freezing, this is how it looks at the Hudson train station waiting for the first train from Albany on its way to New York.  We are a small band of commuters who nod to each other from our sleep filled minds.  We all head to the Quiet Car so we can return to our interrupted dreams until Penn Station.

 

Drawing Photography Painting

Snow Drawing with Twig, 2019, Archival Digital Print

Snow Drawing with Twig, 2, 2019, Archival Digital Print

 

The two photographs are part of my continued interest in images which merge drawing, photography and painting into one seamless medium which emphasizes the experience of seeing over the experience of naming.

Images and Ideas

Two Pines in the Snow, 2019, Archival Digital Print

It was a full long weekend of work. Other than errands and chores, the days were free to focus on the work. Seeing an image emerge from the material has magic. That a mere pencil, or a cut in a surface, or a move of the brush, or a keystroke can move in such a way to produce something alive has been part of us since we were in the cave. To be an artist is to continue that thread of being, a privilege and a burden.

 

Although many feel helpless in the face of this new darkness abroad the country, the vile racism and violence, it remains up to us to keep making our images.  Artists keep the light of humanity alive and though it may not seem it because we feel we should be doing something more explicitly activist, more directly effecting the social situation, just that we are giving back our gift in the face of this evil serves the Good.

 

 

 

Moving toward March

Cold Sun, 2019, Archival Digital Print

Just back from feeding the flock.  It is a lesson to watch these marvelous birds and learn their ways and observe their different personalities.  TickTock remains wary of me, but we are now accustomed to each other and he understands the gist of what I say.  When I tell him to get the girls, he rounds them up and brings them into the coop like a dutiful herding boy. And…

She’s on her way.   Yes, in a rag sweater, silk underwear, a heavy coat and scarf, mittens and arctic boots, but Spring is trudging closer and will be on scene soon.  This photo was taken two weeks ago and already things have markedly changed and the slight softened and warmed in spite of snow storms and freezing temps.

 

 

Winter Nests

Light in the Darkness, 2019, Archival Digital Print

Just now I spotted a nest so low on the branch that I wondered how those hatchlings survived. It is right out the front window in a thicket of flowering bushes and would have been well hidden when there was full foliage. Nevertheless, I thought that the feral cat I feed would have spotted it last summer and had a meal. In this time of year last summer’s nests are visible and they are everywhere.  Tiny ones, ones in pouches, slung from branches like pot hammocks and big ones high up.  We can think about such things during this time when the Earth is deep in sleep and we can dream of life when she awakens again.

When you live on land rather than cement every season is important and pleasurable.  Winter is no longer just something to be endured but filled with quiet to remember and to plan and especially to appreciate.

 

Night at 4:30 PM

December Fireworks, 2018, Archival Digital Print

The Sun sets in the afternoon now. It is night at teatime now.  But, the Solstice is nearing and soon we shall pass that marker and know that the Sun will start to shine on us longer and longer each day. It is a time for celebration as we turn to the renewal of spring. Weeks, months to go of snow, sleet and cold but the promise of change must have been placed in us eons ago and given us hope.

Everywhere there is beauty in this quiet time. A certain bird, a surprising rock, a configuration of twigs and light and a building edge that seems almost glowing with rightness. It is a time of a drawing consciousness, too.  To draw is to connect to the first thought in the mind.  Much of what we see as lack and emptiness in today’s paintings and drawings is rooted in secondary source as the end product rather than the beginning of the trip. But, once engulfed with the possibilities of this most primal of forms a world opens that is like nothing else.

The world waits while we dither away on small stuff, waits for us to simply See.