The Pleasure of Chaos, 2018, Archival Digital Print
The question for all of us is how we give our gifts back. It is the sole reason we are here and while it would seem an easy mission, in truth, for many, a clear sense of purpose is never formed out of the fog of being. There are always diversionary activities, and with enough of them one can fill up a life. But to what end? If we aren’t aware of gifts then we cannot discover our purpose and we will never live fully.
The girls are growing up, 2018, Archival Digital Print
In a matter of hours, from the morning feed until the evening one, the six Claras went from adolescent chicks with pale beige feathers and lots of down showing to young hens with russet feathers, real chicken tails and the beginnings of combs. Now I wish I had been in there all day and snapped a photo once an hour. What a transformation as life does its thing.
May Rain, 2018, Archival Digital Print
Everything is muted in these spring mists, all values close and a general dreaminess about the land. I saw a social club of six Turkeys out for a walk in the mist as I was driving to the store to get, what else? bird seed. They ambled along together with full ruffled feathers so they looked like grade school bulletin board Turkeys there in the cornfield behind the homestead.
The Backyard, 8 A.M., 2018, Archival Digital Print
The Earth is awake and blossoming, full of new life and optimism. Persephone is freed from Hades and Mother Earth is joyous.
Up here everything conspires to give pleasure, sight, smell, sound. I live in a paradise. Yesterday a big Crow paid a visit to my front yard, a first. There is a family of Ravens nearby but rarely I hear or see Crows, so this is the first time I’ve seen one land and hang around. He was glistening, curious and a gift to me. I have ground round in the refrigerator for him if he comes back. I’d like him to be a regular.
I’m thinking a lot about watercolor and plan to set up a table near where this shot was taken so I can sit out and observe and paint. In spite of my respect for the medium, I had a show of watercolors that went on tour throughout the United States in the late 70s, I haven’t touched them since then, preferring gouache instead. I’m ready to see what happens.
Two Claras, 2018, Archival Digital Print
This was taken over a week ago and already the girls are the size of Bantams and much more curious about the world. Clara Christina Columbus now jumps on top of the water jug to consider where she might go. To prevent her giant leap for Chickenkind I’ve added screening. The Columbus chick is the most curious of the six whereas Clara Voyant, named by my neighbor, Betty Grindrod, is dreamier and in her own world. And Clara Madonna, the bottle blonde, is just taken with her own beauty. Their markings and personalities are all different and I continue to marvel at the wonder of growth, DNA wiring and individuation. My brilliant former TA John Gross is coming up from New York this weekend to help me prepare the shed and soon the outdoor pen will be replaced with a varmint proof construction. Then we shall await the eggs.
Westside Highway, Rain, 2018, Archival Digital Print
A mighty thunder and lighting storm rolled in last night. The sudden darkness was spectacular for its drama as it came across from the Catskills. I was out picking a few Daffodils trying to grab those beauties before I was struck dead. Those blooms smile at me now right above the sink with a single white Geranium. The Westside Highway shot from last week gives the urban version of rain from the train, but it is far less thrilling than the experience up here.
The rains are welcome now and good for all things growing. I have two climbing roses ready to be set in and various seeds started for the back garden. It looks like a Fox may be living under the foundation of the house and I hope to see kits soon if I’m right.
I’m thinking a lot about the abundance of empty decorative painting and what it means particularly now, and finishing the book on Hillary’s campaign disaster.
More soon on all of these.
Six New Chicks, 2018, Archival Digital Print
This morning, six Rhode Island Red chicks joined the Homestead. They are so pretty and innocent with the smallest of peeps. They will live under warming lights indoors for six weeks until they have healthy plumage. Then to the henhouse behind the studio. I’m growing Calendulas from non-GMO seeds for them as well as other nice greens. They will be free range during the day and protected at night from the hungry Others. All are named Clara.
Retreating Snow, 2018, Archival Digital Print
I started a painting yesterday, this thing that seemed to come from some source other than me. It presents itself and wow! I am surprised by what I see and how it got here. Later I was out finding images to shoot and was reminded of Morandi’s landscapes, the drained color and almost imperceptible hue differences, I see him everywhere now.
Wire, Snow, 2018, Archival Digital Print
A new folio, Drawn on Land, is here. It is concerned with the minimal, not only which crosses and clouds drawing but also has expressive content that is not explicit.
Early Morning, The Last Storm of Winter, 2018, Archival Digital Print
We have passed it. The last storm of this winter came last night, wet, soggy and all its determination gone. Winter has given up and this is his last effort in the losing struggle. My studio is safe and dry, the plumber came today and repaired the leak in the house and now the ceiling must dry before the contractor can repair. All is well on the Homestead. Even the Coyotes were more tuneful last night.
On the national front, it’s not so good. We learn of the Secretary of State’s dismissal, this apparently done not by personal message but a tweet. The shadow side of our national nature stares at us unblinking. No icing nor military music, nor parades will cover up the darkness that is lose on the land. The Democrats are like the old Kaiser, desperate for power but too old and weak to take a lead in opposition. They are no where these days. Does anyone remember history?