Sunday, February 28, 2010
This is my interpretation of a photo (with permission) by a most talented friend Guy (http://www.flickr.com/photos/10422334@N08/) of a Canadian morning sunrise -- THANk YOU, Guy, once more!
This morning's sun has just broken the treeline, and she's a welcome sight! It's been warmer lately, though we've snow predicted for the middle of next week.
Got some chores done yesterday and that feels great. We went to dinner last night - a fine French restaurant - Oh yes, overindulged indeed --! Followed by a family bluegrass band .... It seems like 19 forevers since C and I spent an evening out ... and it was so good to do something so simple together.
Today, a bit of rest, a bit of work (I have a major training session to conduct next week) and preparations for classes.
But the sun is shining -- and the light is immensely cheering!
Saturday, February 27, 2010
The wind blew hard yesterday and the sun shone, but the cold kept me indoors and dreaming of Italy. This painting was done from a photo I took of the calla lilies in the courtyard of a Tuscan gardener. I loved seeing them in their earthenware pot ... dark green leaves, bright white flowers ....and the memories of spring.
Hope you have a great weekend!
Friday, February 26, 2010
Though the crocus are poking out of the ground, and in some neighborhoods, daffodils are popping up as well, snow flew yesterday -- flurries only, no accumulation - but the blustery winds and frigid temps reminded us once more, winter isn't ready to depart.
This painting was done from photos I took during our previous snowfall. I stood on our road and looked across the fence and through the trees to capture a bit of the farmhouse.
Yesterday's snow was beautiful - if short lived. The days are slowly growing longer, and I am certain this summer when we slog through 90F heat and humidity, we'll miss the crispness of such clean, bright air.
Still, it seems to have been a mighty long winter!
Thursday, February 25, 2010
After a 16 hour day and more than 10 hours of teaching, I fell into bed last night. I managed to sketch a bit, but didn't finish my painting. This was done several weeks ago ....
We managed to dodge the snow for the moment, and had instead a steady cold, grey rain. We worked outdoors in that mess, and fortunately, the weather didn't hinder our workshop participants.
I've another few meetings and our weekly 'Plant a Row' teaching this morning -- then I'm heading for some needed rest and that magic word -- Home!
Wednesday, February 24, 2010
This sketch is a combination of several images --- I LOVE the flowered fence - reminds me of warm weather! LOL and the house and mountain are from images I have of Italy ... so I suppose the entire work is my dream place ... Italy with flowers and sunshine! LOL
Busy day yesterday -- busier today with a late night workshop. We're in for more rain with the possibility of snow --- my gracious, folks around my neck of the woods can't remember EVER having so much snow in one winter!
Meanwhile, I'll dream of warm weather, sunshine, Italy ... and leisure ...
Hope your day is great!
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
Funny thing about photographs. When I returned from Italy, I couldn't get enough of looking through, painting or reviewing my trip through the thousands of images I captured. After a while, I grew tired of painting from my own photos, and so put them away.
I was hunting for an image for Bill's next challenge and went through many of those same phoots -- and funny thing -- I saw NEW things in them I missed previously! Like this one!
I remember being utterly enchanted by those pine trees that looked like umbrellas ... I didn't get a chance to view them closely, but I remember snapping this one from the moving bus as we made our way to Venice. There's a small vineyard in front of the house, and those three 'umbrellas' as well as the traditional Tusan cedars ... so Italy!
It was a far better day yesterday than it has been the last few weeks, and I was able to get to my friend's before dark. We've a late workshop tonight and tomorrow night and I'm hoping the intensity of demands remains at the low end for the rest of the week. I"m still somewhat draggy -- this virus seems to linger forever! Sigh ...
Stay well ...
Monday, February 22, 2010
It's apparent that my desire to be in warm climes, sunshiney days and at leisure is so apparent! LOL
This is a view from a photo reference from Wet Canvas .... a peek at a beach in Greece through bright summery flowers .... ah .... I know it's coming! LOL
Another rather busy day and today a return to an even more obligation filled week. We've workshops to teach or attend three out of four nights so again, I'll be scarce.
We're in for a bout of rain today with the cold weather returning for the remainder of the week.
Looks like I'll be hunting more 'beaches' to paint! LOL
Have a great week!
Sunday, February 21, 2010
Though I've painted dozens of doors, I decided to try this one from Allan Kirk (http://www.stepbystepwatercolour.com/index.html). I am enjoying learning his 'wash' approach - a bit different that the direct approach used by other artists. I also like the soft, impressionistic results. I have to admit too, that the images that Allan offers are some of the most beautiful landscapes and just those kinds of small European towns that I love!
That virus and the consequences of intense weeks of work, are still hanging on, and I find myself still pretty draggy. The sunshine and warm temps this weekend have helped, as has several naps (and yes catching up with some overdue chores) -- but I have to admit to still be a bit 'under the weather.' I've one more day of rest before another wild week.
Still, it's wonderful to see that bright sun, be able to walk outdoors with being knocked over by the wind, and remove at least ONE layer of clothing!
Charles has his jam today, so I'm looking forward to hearing some fine music and the laughter of friends.
Have a great day!
Saturday, February 20, 2010
In homage to the warming trend we're having this weekend and the glimpse of a few crocuses at the arboretum, I painted this loose, bunch of bright flowers. I wanted a less rigid, less defined interpretation, so some of my edges aren't as 'exact' as they might be. The crocus colors cheer me and the bits of purple give me hope that spring is truly on its way.
However, the forecast for next week is for us to have another 'event' -- rain that just might be another snowfall. It is truly unusual for this part of NC to experience so much snow and such cold winters.
BTW, our 'Plant a Row' class was well attended -- including the media! And our volunteers had a BALL in the greenhouse where our temps were a balmy mid 70F!
I managed to get a number of chores done yesterday, took a much needed nap, and today, we'll get a few more obligations behind us.
Friday, February 19, 2010
When times are as rough as they've been the last couple of weeks and fatigue makes it hard to concentrate, I turn to that WetCanvas lesson that uses wet washes to create a background and one's imagination to finish the piece (http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=475094).
This 'hot' painting -- (I suppose it' s my need for the kind of sunshine that actually warms us! LOL) came from this exercise .... all that glow and sun reminded me of the cornfields of our county on a blinding summer's day --- the sun so bright you can hardly see the green in the corn... the entire field ablaze with light ....
I've a ton of things to catch up with this weekend so I'll be scarce. But more than those pesky chores, I do so hope to spend some quality time returning to painting and the leisure and relaxation it represents.
Thursday, February 18, 2010
Today is our first 'Plant a Row' for the Hungry workshop. The Arboretum has set aside 1-2 rows for growing vegetable to donate to the NC Food Bank. We've made this a community program by offering informal gardening classes weekly to the volunteers. Today we start with seeds and the greenhouse. Each week, we'll focus on different aspects of gardening in exchange for the volunteers working on those vegetable rows. I'll take the harvested vegetables to the Food Shuttle for distribution once we begin producing our crops.
It's been an intense time at work, with long days, tired nights and many frustrations. It's been affecting my painting, and I"m looking forward to being at home and finally getting that restive weekend I need. This painting was done while at my daughter's -- in between sick children and my own bout with the same virus.
Though the weather forcast has been for warmer temps, it's been mighty cold. The snow we had in NC and SC is about gone, but the fierce, bitter wind continues to blow, and the sun hasn't been much help.
Nonetheless, we spotted several crocuses poking their brave heads through the mulch .....
Hope springs ....
Wednesday, February 17, 2010
The babies seem to be doing better, and my dd is returning to work this morning with fingers crossed she won't get called back to the daycare for the children. Thank you all for your well wishes! Mercy, this has been a season of illness after illness ... whew.
Work continues to be mighty busy -- meetings, classes, spring preparations for the landscape, construction, new projects.
This painting was done over a few days at my dd's ....
We're in for some warmer temps this week and I'm looking forward to them! And, perchance, seeing the sun again!
Have a good week and stay well!
Tuesday, February 16, 2010
I'm just back to work and things are jumping. When I left SC, the baby was still sick and my dd has gotten her symptoms back again ... SIGH ... it was so HARD to leave! My fingers are crossed that they get better soon. At least her National Guard husband returns from overseas this weekend ....
This is an abstract done with a nod to Jeanne Carbonetti ...
Got to run ... sorry for being so absent ...
Monday, February 15, 2010
This painting was done last week as I was dreaming of marshlands, spring, spartina grasses and all the rich life that goes on in these bodies of water.
The bodies of those here in SC are still sick. It's been a restless night with fevered and crying children, my dd's and my own body aches, chills, weakness, headache.
Yet this morning, we're both able to 'try' a cup of coffee and the baby is holding down her formula, Taylor says she's feeling better and looks like her fever has broken.
I hope we'll be recovering today ... it's been rough seas for us....
Depending on how everyone is after a while will determie if I can drive back to NC and to work -- I've another meetng and obligation filled week ...
Take care ...
Sunday, February 14, 2010
HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY!
I'm sending my gratitude and love to my family and dear friends here on this day of hearts and flowers.....
I painted this earlier this week and happened to have it on my travel file disk.
The flowers can't match the wonderful surprise of the real thing yesterday from C ... that man is so sweet! We're surrounded by some beauties I hope to get to paint.
But, dang it all, my daughter and I fell into bed last night feeling odd .. Yep, Riley has been so generous and shared her stomach bug. It's been a long night and the day wil be equally long.
I understand from my son that his children had it too so it must be one of those things going around.
I'm off to lie down a bit before the children arise .. and to see if I can settle my system.
Happy Valentine's Day! Share the GOOD things! LOL
Saturday, February 13, 2010
It's been a busy time ... I got to SC in time to get some groceries and unpack the car before the slam of 6" of wet, heavy snow -- a most unusual, rare event for this part of SC! It was beautiful ... and I was glad to be with my dd as we nursed the baby through the worst of her sickness and distract Taylor.
Today, I worked with Riley while my dd and Taylor had a chance to play in the snow ..... Riley was able to hold down her food today -- yahoo ... and both she and Taylor took a much needed nap and my dd and I could catch up a bit.
We finally exchanged Christmas and birthday gifts ... and have a special dinner .. in between children, rockings, and 'let's play Nonna!"
The warm temps have toppled the snowman, and the steps and cars are clear for the most part.
It's been a good visit inspite of it all... and we have another day to perhaps, rest a bit.
I don't have much time on my dd's computer ... but I thank you all for your well wishes for my grands...
Stay safe -- and well!
Friday, February 12, 2010
Arches CP 140#
It was hard to get going yesterday, but thank heavens, it was somewhat quieter and the slower pace helped me rest from a long week.
I got home last night and spent some time on Google maps, dreaming as I often do, of Italy. I found this charming scene of San Gimignano and decided to paint it using the impressionistic style I've been learning from Allan Kirk. It was fun --!
I got a call very early this morning from my dear daughter.... her children are sick, her husband overseas, and she needs my help. I'll be heading to South Carolina early this morning to help her get the children to the doctor's as well as giving her some moral and physical support.
I'll be offline until calm is restored for both our families....
In the meantime, have a great weekend and I'll catch up as soon as I can!
Thursday, February 11, 2010
I painted this scene a while ago. It's another of Allan's terrific exercises .... I love his impressionistic approach, especially for buildings - as mine always tend to be mighty stiff. BTW, Allan has started a wonderful blog (http://tarnincolour.blogspot.com/). This week he's posted some lessons on shadows and painting old buildings in the sunshine --- check it out!
The workshop last night went well -- but ended, naturally, pretty late, so today I am dragging--big time! I'm waiting for the coffee to finish perking, as I think it's going to be another caffeine IV day ...
The winds howled and howled yesterday! And despite the sun, it was so very cold and terribly uncomfortable. We remained in our mobile unit office space despite the threatening winds and clacking trees. Things are supposed to improve somewhat today.....fingers are crossed!
Stay warm, stay safe, and have a cup of coffee with me!
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
I found a wonderful photo reference on Wet Canvas of this rural farm and field of sunflowers. I simplified the scene and flowers and brightened the image to reflect a more sunshiney morning. All those greens is a good practice for the spring! LOL
But our weather is far from springlike. The wind is howling this morning, and the frigid temps make the day mighty uncomfortable. As light is just coming up over the college, I can see all the pine trees surrounding our office swaying and bending. We'll probably have to move to the brick building across the Arboretum to ride out the high gusts of winds we're expecting today.
The Mid-Atlantic is having snow, and C told me that it was snowing a bit in Oxford when he left this morning. The snow is not expected to accumulate at home -- but Washington DC is readying for another 12".
I have several classes to teach today, so I'm dashing to ready for them. It'll be another late night ....
Take care -- be safe.
Tuesday, February 09, 2010
With rain predicted today, heavy winds tomorrow and more cold weather, sometimes I imagine that spring is waiting for us as much as we are waiting for it! This view of a park, sans people or animals, seems to be waiting for us to be there with picnic basket and laughter ... needing us as much as we, especially now, need it.
I'm looking forward to the leisure of picnics and walks in the park, warm sun and watching my grandchildren run and play in the grass.
It won't be long now .....
Stay warm ... and think SUN!
Monday, February 08, 2010
Thank you all for your birthday wishes for my sweetheart. We enjoyed the day...and even got outdoors a bit in the sunshine. Great to see El Sol again, even if it were only for a day!
I've had marshes on my mind lately. Don't know why, but for some reason I've been thinking and dreaming of those Charleston estuaries teeming with the beginnings of sealife. I found a photo reference of a marsh and sunrise and used it to dream about warm days and the sultry summers our family used to spend on those marshes so many years ago.
The days, even with a bit of sun, are still mighty cold, but each evening as daylight lingers longer, we know spring will be here soon. I"m hoping we'll get a bit more snow before then, though it seems rain is more in the forecast over the next few weeks.
We've another busy week with several workshops planned .... hope you stay warm....!
Sunday, February 07, 2010
Knock Out Roses - Double Pink - HAPPY BIRTHDAY CHARLES!
Originally uploaded by linfrye
HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my sweet C! Today is one of those 'significent' birthdays for him and so soft roses for one of the most precious blessings in my life. HAPPY BIRTHDAY CHARLES!
We had a bit of snow followed by rain yesterday, but we made it to Emily's birthday (doesn't it seem the birthdays all come at the same time?! LOL) - and enjoyed seeing her open her gifts -- cake was good too!
The sun is just peeking from behind the woodlands, promising us a bit of his presence - mighty welcome after a few weeks without that wonderful light.
We'll be a bit busy today and hope to get outdoors for a change, so I'll be off and on the 'Net ... hope your day is great!
Saturday, February 06, 2010
The weather ... it seems to occupy me more than usual. My paint date was cancelled due to snow, which later turned to sleet, and later still, turned to rain, and rain and more rain. We're under a 'flood' advisory with the all the rain that has fallen. We're also expecting another 'dusting' of snow - which, depending on the air mass stream, either will miss us completely, or turn into an 'event,' or turn into more rain. Everything is muddy, damp and wet - and puddles are everywhere. Whew.
This afternoon we make our way to my son's to celebrate Emily's sixth birthday. It truly floors me to think that six years have already passed since the day she was born! I still so vividly remember my son announcing her birth! She's in school, learning to read and write, and so 'grown-up' in her mannerisms and speech. My gracious.
This painting is based on the snow we had last week and the many grasses (which I love!!) we have on our property. Despite all the rain, patches of the white stuff are still lingering in spots, and for me, I'd rather have the snow than all this rain! LOL
Thank you for your most generous and kind comments yesterday. Your encouragement truly keeps me picking up the brush no matter how little time I might have .... Thank you!
Take care today. The Mid-Atlantic states are scheduled for a true blizzard and heavy snow. Please be safe.
Friday, February 05, 2010
This painting was done from another of Allan Kirk's lessons (http://www.stepbystepwatercolour.com/.What appealed to me about this image was that brooding storm and the fields leading into the further distance.
Our skies look just like this today. We're expecting another bout of icy rain, sleet and snow. I live in an area that could get a light dusting, or if the weather patterns shift ever slightly, another foot of the white stuff.
BTW, Allan has a new blog -- take a look
I'm to paint with a friend today and at the moment, the clouds are merely gathering. I'll have to keep an eye upwards so I can return home before the storm hits.
Stay safe and warm today. Temps have fallen dramatically!
Thursday, February 04, 2010
Knowing that my day yesterday would be wildly intense (and mercy, that's an understatment!), I took the last 15 minutes before leaving the house yesterday morning to sketch this ... It's based a photo of one of our neighbor's fields when C and I walked our neighborhood in the snowfall ..
We had a super-busy class yesterday, preparing for the classes, phone calls, mail, demos we had to set up, catching up from missing Monday's lecture and planting, and conducting our overflowing workshop. Instead of the class lasting the two hours we scheduled, we didn't leave the office until 9:45 pm ... I was too 'wired' to get to sleep much before 1 am ... It's barely 6:30 am now, so I know that caffeine will be my lifeline today and I'll fall into bed before 9 pm ... whew ....
We're expecting another 'dusting' of snow tonight and tomorrow. The roads were pretty clear from home to work-- but our neighborhood was still slip/slidey for six miles ... Hopefully most of that cleared by yesterday's warm temps.
I hope to have a bit of time tonight to paint more leisurely tonight ... we'll see how well the caffeine works! LOL
Wednesday, February 03, 2010
Bill's new challenge (http://www.flickr.com/photos/lorus_maver/4307538986/) offered us a chance to warm up with thoughts of spring and gardens overflowing with bright tulips - quite a difference from my view of slush and ice!
Some schools are reopening today -- including my college, so I'm off to brave the black ice and still remaining snow packs. C and I took the car late yesterday to view our neighborhood roads and quite truthfully, they were awful. Schools in my county are closed, while those further south (where I work) are open. This 100 mile difference often creates a dilemma for me in bad weather. I'm cutting the difference and attempting the roads once the sun is up. I have to teach today both curriculum classes and a public workshop that even as late as yesterday had folks trying to register. That's a good thing, and we'll sign them up for the second class we'll hold - but my gracious - from peaceful relaxing to marathon! LOL
Stay safe today.
Tuesday, February 02, 2010
Snow still covers our region and schools are closed again. We are expecting freezing rain this morning, which will certainly result in more ice and snow slush. C and I took a walk through the still pristine areas of snow yesterday, knowing they'll soon be gone. The snow was melting in the near 50F temps, but beneath the slush, was a sold base of rock-hard ice. With the rain we're expecting, that ice will worsen.
It's been a gift, these unexpected few days at home with C, and very restful. We've used the time almost like a vacation - leaving those pesky 'I'll get to it one day' chores to yet another day.
We have a large Arboretum program scheduled fo tomorrow night. It's been overbooked for a while and we've had to schedule a second class later this month (Gardening 101) to accommodate those we couldn't fit in the classroom. With the weather still iffy, we'll be watching forecasts closely to see if THIS workshop must be rescheduled. I know this for sure -- our relaxed time will soon end and we'll be met with even more intense 'catching up!'
Monday, February 01, 2010
Oh yes, I am enjoying the snow --! And with the cold we're having, I'm enjoying the ice too (but less so!). The college is closed today as are most of the schools in the area. There just was not sufficient ice melt yesterday to render the roads safe.
We had a 'warmish' afternoon yesterday - enough to make our way to the garage and unearth the snow shovel and scrape the porches and steps. Our neighbor came by with his huge tractor and plow and graciously cleared our driveway (it's a mighty long one! LOL) and then went down the road to clear enough of it so that a car could get to the secondary road. We live 15 miles from a major roadway, so being able to get anywhere really does require the help of our friends.
We walked about the property taking more photos. This was the first 'siginficant' snow in a few years (other than an inch or so) - so it really was a major event for us.
I was having a hard time painting yesterday - distracted probably - or too busy gazing out of the windows! LOL But these cluster of trees caught in the early morning snowfall the other day really helped me focus. I painted these same trees several years ago during a snowfall (http://www.flickr.com/photos/linfrye/3324833079/) only that view was from the daytime. I tried in vain to capture the moonlight through the trees last evening - but my 'snap and go' camera just couldn't 'see' such subtlety.
It's supposed to rain today and if it does, the snow will certainly be gone so I'm going to enjoy it while it's around. However, there's another 'chance' of the white stuff next weekend ... Woooo WHooo ...