It’s been day after day of storms here on the island–grey misty mornings interrupted with wind gusts and hail, power outages (typical!) and the occasional breathtaking rainbow. Good painting weather! The fire is lit, the scented candle works its magic in the dark front hall and I work, glancing up every now and then to watch the fat splat of the rain spatter against the house’s old windows. They’ve seen stormy times or two in their over 100 years.
There are tiny bits of color attempting to remind Mother Nature that it’s Spring, hello! The big old camellia hedge started off with a good effort–a pretty little grouping of pink blooms at the tippy top where the first sun warms the beginning buds–but the roar of the brittle cold sea wind and pelting of hard icy snow have beaten them back…pink turned to brown and now sadly, one giant has bent and toppled to the ground. Not sure if we can save it but we’re trying!
The bulbs that we planted in the old blue clawfoot tub (the one that we found hidden and upside down in the woods last year and moved to the little garden in the back of the house) are all starting to pop up, nice and green and straight and tall. That’s the good news! And so I continue to paint, orange and pink and red, grateful for color inside the house at least!
Two smaller canvases are just finished with something new. Each has a bit of floral paper from a vintage Chinese lantern. One bloom pink, the other bloom purple. Like the delicate paper parasols we cherish, Chinese lanterns,romantic and joyous, have a special spot in the studio. I try to imagine their stories, their parties, their celebrations, all hung in a row on a pretty ribbon somewhere over a table in a yard, softly glowing in the darkness of the evening, shining down on people below, gathered, laughing, dancing. (And there would be no rain in this scenario.)
The lanterns’ patterns now peek out from the background of these small paintings, hidden a bit by layers of blue and green paint. They share the space with plump small birds, vines and wee speckles of gold. They will be part of the group garden-themed April show at Museo in Langley.
Another item new in the studio: the March issue of Seattle magazine. It’s an honor to have “Love Song,” 60×48, botanical and red, featured in John Stevens’ column Classic Finds + Design. Page 6, Northwest Home section.
And lastly, I’m painting every day getting ready for my show in June at Pacini Lubel Gallery in Seattle. Orange has made itself very much at home on the canvases lately, and of course birds and berries, colors of all hues and new for me–more patterns.
Collecting beach glass and blue and white Asian porcelain from the island’s rocky beaches is a favorite activity (rain or shine!) and their colors and designs have inspired a new direction: their sea-washed faded patterns have begun to show up on the canvases, hidden among the nestling birds and blooms.
Here’s a sneak peek! Thanks for visiting.