Alone in the Studio

Sadie is looking for the students we had in the studio last week. All she could find was the local turkey family. It is just a week before the Thanksgiving holiday and the leaves are leaving rather quickly.

I am busy in the studio working on pieces for the exhibit next April when I return from Australia. Here is one of the work tables with all the pieces (actually just about half) needed to make decisions on placement, arrangement and commitment. I am combining papers, prints, cloth and bits of Nature onto boards.

I like lining up lines that relate to the overall “landscape” of the piece.

And I am just showing the detail shots of some of the four finished pieces.

Some like the one above include a wood engraving I did a few years back on a paper purchased in China.

Some are a bit narrative using several cropped wood block relief prints about my yard and fish pond.

Here is one that I thought was finished but decided to add just a bit of an etching done in Australia.

These details are feeding into plans for extra small and more intimate pieces.

While in Japan we would walk very early in the mornings, often in the mist. I carved a wood engraving of the small stacked rice stems in the fields along the road just the other side of small bamboo fences. The “outtakes” of these prints are coming in handy now for the new work.

This afternoon I will take all the built spacers that have to fit in between the glass and the collage and cover them with black paper before the tedious job of fitting them into the frame.  I should just buy black foam core material for this, but hate to waste the scraps of museum board so cut and layer up the thicknesses I need. If I paid for professional framing, the cost would be so much more and I rather like the challenge of doing it.

Last night we went over to a neighbors for a bit of refreshment. This is what greeted us in the front yard.

Isn’t that lit tree sweet? It just sits there in the woods as a reminder that more than Thanksgiving is coming. I am not all that ready for any of it. The year went too fast. And I was reminded last night by another neighbor that I used to be more social with taking turns hosting gatherings of neighbors and their friends. Then, he reminded me, I declared that I no longer wanted to do it, so take me off the list. It did not take very long before it was more strangers than friends that gathered around the table….but even some of the “friends” I realized I did not care to spend an evening with, much less feed them.

Once you become part of a community there are expectations of performance.  And I am simply too much beyond having the willingness to participate. It was a lovely evening with good food and very good company. Lots of catching up with some of the neighbors I do enjoy and we could come home not feeling we had to host the next one. I think there can be rewards for being just a touch ornery. Age with a sense of limited time can do that to a person.

Now I should be thinking about the menu for Thanksgiving….something to feed nine people I very much look forward to feeding and spending time with. I can already hear the conversations of art and politics…..opinions on both are easy to share over good food and wine.

Hopefully some of them will compose a letter for the Trump bowl made by one of the students last week to be mailed to the White House soon.

*And if any of you want to contribute to the bowl, I will send you the address to have your letter added.

And just for fun here is some of the art that showed up at Art Group last Sunday. I am proud to contribute dryer lint to my fellow artist so he can add to the mystique of these pieces. The one in the foreground is a “Fake News Detector.”

We could not get it to work in my house….too much National Public Radio.

Til the holiday next week is over.