I needed her voice this morning. Thank you, New Day.
Now i finally can move forward again having gotten this little bird from one of the twitcher’s off my desk.
Even as i posted this i saw a problem with my aerial perspective and had to make yet another change. These things are too touchy! i am not going to photograph it again!
Here are some photos of Storm King as promised. The place is vast and my back and foot were dead by the time we got the bus home. However, like my visit to Innisfree this destination had been on my bucket list for a long time and I am thrilled to have had the experience of being there.
It is amazing to me how many fascinating places there are all with a days visit of home. Yes, that includes my own yard. The part I’m trying to overcome is my sadness at having to do it with only what i can carry inside. i keep trying to turn that into joy and failing.
So again, thank you, Enya for some much needed songs:
“If you really want to”/ “You Don’t need a reason” and-“If i could be where you are”.
However, the last several weeks have been hectic. I am hoping once the memorial service for my mother is over things will even out a bit. But having been designated as the sibling responsible for organizing all the details for the service and reception (which are being held “out of state”) I am a bit frazzled. This isn’t exactly my forte.
And to keep me on my toes there have been several juried shows to enter and their respective openings to attend. At this point I am ready to retire to a convent or some quiet retreat on the coast of Maine.
Instead I have gone foreword with my quest for adventure and so i am once more following the path once set by My New Day. This has recently taken me to The Maine coastal Botanical Gardens, the Cloisters in NY City, to Storm King Sculpture Museum above the Hudson, and just today to Innisfree Garden near Millbrook NY.
I can’t possibly do justice to even one of these visits in a single post but I’ll try to give you sense of the experience connected with the place.
I’ll start with Innisfree.
Consider Keats poem and you can feel the ambience of Innisfree. A beautiful landscape garden of many acres which was laid out mid century around a lake; Innisfree invites the visitor to stroll from pocket garden to pocket garden along paths which cross bridges, climb slopes, emerge to overlooks, and branch with delightfully unending choice. The sense is oriental in detail and form but the landscape is derived from New England motives; tall pines, sparkling water, majestic oak trees, green slopes, reeds and running rivulets, stone walls. All along the way there are chairs and benches inviting one to sit and hold conversation perhaps catching up with a dear friend or just contemplating the scene in solitude. Imagine yourself there:
I sat on the moss beneath a huge European beech and did a quick painted sketch of the serpentine garden below me. Then I moved off to shoot a few photographs and finish my walk around the lake before closing time. Like the rest of my month this was done in something of a hurry having to ride piggyback on dropping my husband off in Leeds NY to rendezvous with my son. He is helping him drive a truck and trailer of house hold furnishings from Vermont down to a new home in Richmond Virginia. (life does keep moving ahead!!!) Still I had wanted to get to Innisfree now for over two years and so I was thrilled to have even a short time there. Of course I looked at those chairs with longing and wished…But, I guess “we’re all just beggars at this ball”
Tomorrow I’ll post some more pictures and maybe a bit on Storm King and a sketch or two.
Except for the occasional scream of a blue jay, the woods and edges of the marsh were quiet today. 24 gregarious but quiet birders walked the paths under warm grey skies. There were no unusual birds sighted; only some white throat sparrows, a chipping sparrow, a thrush or two, geese, crows and a pair of ring neck ducks. i found solace in painting a little sketch of one of the several ponds. It’s amazing how much painting helps one to feel at peace..
I’d forgotten to replace the flash card in my camera and anyway the battery was low. But, Painting was better than taking photos. Birders walk very slowly and i travel fast so it was no problem rejoining the group when i finally finished painting.
Well success maybe decades away for me but gratitude for these words from Anne (Anica Art) is very close to my heart. Finding them on her blog brought me back to my current motif, that of a marsh i saw last week while out on a birding walk. Further conversation with her (isn’t the internet an awesome thing-Anne lives in Australia!) has given me resolve to do more with this tomorrow and work more deliberately.
i need to do individual studies of the birds and marsh plants as well as work on pigment choices. i tend to get carried away. Marshes here in Connecticut become a riot of color and texture in the fall.
Here are the 4 i’ve done. When I’m painting -When I am able to paint- the world briefly gets to be a better, happier place.
The bird walks are fun. Our leader, a member of the local Audubon chapter has introduced me to many different and previously unknown preserves. Venues all within striking distance of my home. And going out with knowledgeable people who can identify a bird by its song or flight pattern as well as by its markings is a wonderful help for this novice birder.
Now i’ve got to turn in! as there is a walk tomorrow bright and early!
It seems as if I should be posting something and yet…
I can’t think what that would be.
To post requires an ability to feel, create, and act. I just want to be,
I can’t even think what to say right now.
Posting is sharing. I feel sucked up in a vacuum. I am empty.
It’s not that life is dull; far from it; I‘ve recently been to lots of beautiful and exciting places, enjoyed rich experiences and had full responsibilities to live up to. I’ve even managed to paint and sketch a bit and technically that is what this blog is all about so I could post those bits here. But they don’t please me or seem to have any merit or purpose. I’ve written poetry but that isn’t really supposed to go in here unless the poem is connected to a painting.
“The brush dances and the ink sings”
So within every storm cloud there is a silver lining.
Here is a video by one of the first artists i found when i began my blog and whom I have followed daily since. His work is extraordinary and it has been a pleasure to watch it evolve. This most recent video is awesome. Check out his website if you haven’t already.
Meaning is like many things we lose:
it turns out to be wherever we left it.
But we don’t leave it, it leaves us.
If you’ve never known the feeling of not feeling,
you’ll struggle to understand what I’m telling you,
looking for distant cousins of not-feeling
who bear a superficial resemblance:
like sadness or grief.
There’s a difference between reason and reasons:
reason tells us how to achieve something,
but we must have reasons to want to do anything.
These reasons come from our feelings, and
when we do not have them,
there are no reasons.
And we find no meaning,
no matter where we left it.
Many houses and rivers distant, she looks over my shoulder and wonders why I communicate this way.
Wouldn’t it be easier to write this as a treatise?
Psychology studies these things, it is a matter for science.
I can still hear the surf on Monhegan Island even after a trip yesterday into New York to visit the Cloisters-such a different world-also one I would love to paint.
Then today talking with a fellow artist /photographer I was being urged; strongly urged and encouraged, to visit a nearby farm where I might paint wonderful barns and pumpkins and yet another farm with horses and fall color and, and, and…
I need to stay with waves and rocks, asters and goldenrod, dying spruce and moss.
I need to slow down and paint!
Stop the world! I want to get off!!!
And as if that is not enough, Having resumed my morning walks I am seeing reflections in the marsh, flocks of cedar waxwings tipping off soft needled branches in quest of slate blue juniper berries, clouds that pile up in the blue; more images than I could paint to in a life time.
Wild flower bouquet from Monhegan that made it home in my back back.
Dear readers while you are waiting for me to get my pictures from Monhegan Island organized and posted enjoy a walk with Hanna. She is a kindred spirit who knows the magic of our world and like you is out there on the web.
You don’t have to travel far to experience magic.
We are carrying the magic inside ourselves, though it needs to be rediscovered occasionally.
Small children don’t look for magic. The magic lives within them and they are surrounded by it.
Their world is full of trolls and dragons, castles and mountains. Tigers, lions and brave knights. Not necessarily in that order.
I met a young Spanish couple in Jægersborg Dyrehave. They looked so bewildered, that I asked if I could help.
Did I know the way to The Eremitage Castle? I pointed out the direction. They asked me if there was anything else I could recommend?
I told them about the very special Hawthorn that grows on the plain.
And about a place nearby where many people from Copenhagen were buried back in the 1800 due to a cholera epidemic. And about the deer, I met the day before and…