Plane, 2021, Archival Digital Print
Yesterday morning a single-engine plane flew low back and forth overhead. Its target was the big apple orchard behind my neighbor’s land. Its insect buzz was alarming even though I knew what it was doing. Fruit farmers hire these flyers to spread fertilizer or anti-fungal chemicals, but in the very cold weather they are used to stir up the air and bring down the heated air toward the ground. I was already feeling as if I were channeling the Blitz and tasted the terror of WWII, and the shot I got as it went on a loop over the house confirmed it. The power of images to set a place and a time — even one I never experienced except through media — is real.
Tree with an Itch, 2021, Archival Digital Print
The Eastern Catalpa has frequent itching which Nicky helps treat. Now Nicky came to me three years ago, a stray who must have been left because she is spayed. About the same time another starving Maine Coon Cat — whom I also named Nicky aka Nicodemus because I thought they were both male — and because I had only glanced at both of them on separate occasions out of the corner of my eye and I thought they were the same cat. Slowly over the months this Nicky got closer. Today she is almost tame. No touching though. But, the other Nicky, the Maine Coon, now named Demus, remains very wary. Both have been fattened and are fed outside twice a day. One wonders at the callous treatment of these sensitive beings and also my good luck that they live with me on the land. .
Truck and Red Maple, 2021, Archival Digital Print
The moment when conjunctions of two or three forms sit in the space with such precision and rightness, we know that surely the universe seems perfectly planned. This Red Maple had a brother who was closer to the picture plane, but it was taken down in a wind storm several years ago. The stump shows on the right,
Right before the Snow Starts, Archival Digital Print with Hand Coloring, 2021
That time when the clouds are full and the air smells of it
Every living thing knows that something is
about to happen,
The colors seem so full of themselves
I rush to get back to the house
The flock fed and
The house will feel
Goose Muybridge, 2020, Archival Digital Print
Zach is assisting me in this. He’s a very sweet boy and as white as a cloud. In fact, to hold him is to feel you are holding a cloud, except a cloud that occasionally grows irritable and bites.
Face on the Screen, 2020, Archival Digital Print
I was thinking of Bronzino’s portrait of a young man when I took this. It is actually a still from a short video, I had wanted to get my head turning but failed. I like the gaze in all paintings and photographs. I’m always suspicious of people who won’t look you in the eye. It portends trouble. Not mere shyness but something hidden and rarely positive.
After a week of being tempted, Zachariah braves it and gets in the tub. It’s so much fun to watch these milestones by these beautiful Geese.
Zachariah, 2020, Archival Digital Photo
My proud Pilgrim Gander, Zach, has just fathered a son, Burdock. Pilgrim Geese are doting parents and Zach watches his boy attentively at all times. It is being able to know and observe these beings that balances the horror of the national scene I read about and the ugliness, from the Minnesota murder of a man whose crime was being Black, to the milestone of deaths from Covid-19 that we just passed.
Nightmare, 2020, Archival Digital Print
Life is surreal now, I live in what is my Eden, a magical piece of land which is so beautiful and so serene that I think I’m in a dream and against that the news I follow which is the upside down, and so mean and brutal with this living Evil in the Oval Office, that it is hard to know what or where is The Real.
Bridge in the Mist, 2019, Archival Digital Print
The magic and miracle of photography, the camera, the eye into reality, never fails to intrigue me. It introduces all the questions about reality, position, place, and the documentation of time that Painting can only hint at.
As I frequently address, all photographs by their nature are in our history, situated absolutely in the past. Photography automatically arouses nostalgia that painting cannot do without seeming maudlin, cloying or merely illustrative. The photograph holds this unique place as no other art form can. I wonder why this feature is so rarely addressed.