After our recent storm making the most of a downed photinia branch in the studio today, and once again using one of its branches as a pen for the ink drawing.
And so after five years the story returns. Do you remember From Yardwork to Artwork:The Photinia Story Part One. from May 2016.
666…in progress – Day XXXVI
12 new leaves together with their neighbours,
How could I not respond to my wonderful friend Tina from Travels and Trifles who is hosting this week’s Lens-Artists Challenge: Creativity in the time of Covid with her as always inspiring images and words.
A few weeks ago I was intrigued by my beautiful granddaughter’s Disney Read and Glow drawing tablet so my lovely daughter gave me a present of one for myself. Here are a few of my “creations” some of which I have already blogged about. In these challenging times it has been fun to explore the endless possibilities that this brilliant little children’s drawing tool provides.
Thanks Tina for always inspiring us with your Travels and Trifles.
On today’s third anniversary of the horrific terrorist attack in Barcelona this recent painting of bark from the magnificent trees in the Pacific Spirit Park serves to re-introduce my post from three years ago entitled “From Spirit Park to Spirit Dark” in which my painting of the park that day became transformed into a memorial for all those so tragically lost, as we remember them once again on this sombre day.
From Spirit Park to Spirit Dark – August 18th, 2017
Spirit Dark after Guernica, in progress
The evolution of today’s post:
The Pacific Spirit Regional Park in Vancouver is a beautiful jewel in our city, a place of peace and tranquility that I have posted about many times, and as recently as this week’s Photo Challenge from The Daily Post. On our last visit there one of my photos inspired me…
…to set up a number of sheets of newsprint on the studio wall and see where it took me with charcoal, crayon and paint.
I was happy that the image was progressing well and was close to being finished…
…and then yesterday morning came the news from Spain of the horrific terrorist attack killing and injuring countless innocent men, women and children from all over the world, enjoying a summer’s evening in Las Ramblas in Barcelona. The images were heartbreaking, and one particularly was unforgettable, a baby’s stroller abandoned on the sidewalk and a child lying motionless in the street.
I shall never forget the first time I saw Picasso’s Guernica in New York in 1965. It has haunted me ever since, and those images from Barcelona immediately brought it back to me. It is perhaps one of the greatest works of protest art ever created, painted by Picasso after the attack on the city of Guernica in 1937.
Suddenly my Spirit Park in the studio seemed a million miles away from the reality of the carnage and horror happening across the sea, and images relating to another time in history started to appear amongst the trees together with that stroller and that beautiful innocent child.
As I send sympathy and condolences to all those suffering from yet another crime against humanity, Spirit Dark in some small way is my way of protesting these evil times.
One more photo from that morning in the park perhaps allows me to end with a ray of hope in our dark world.
Post Script 17.8.20
Two years ago in October 2018 visiting the Reina Sofia in Madrid was a special day on our memorable trip to Spain, the highlight of which was seeing Picasso’s Guernica for the second time in over fifty years having first seen it in New York in 1965. Once again, standing before the painting, it takes one’s breath away with its impact as an artistic statement against the horrors of war and of man’s inhumanity to man. Sadly so little seems to have changed in our present times as we see dictators and autocrats across the world continuing to demonstrate that same inhumanity as they terrorize their own people and attempt to prevent democracies from flourishing. To my American friends all I can say is VOTE.
The painting was finished this year.
After yesterday’s post, in a New York frame of mind today, and a look back to 2015:
City of the Imagination I – VIII 23.9.15
City of the Imagination began on Day 261 in response to this week’s Photo Challenge: Grid. Variations VII and VIII were posted yesterday for Day 265, so today I thought I would put all eight together as a final City of the Imagination grid. Look for more to come in the next day or two that will definitely now be off the grid.
Seven years ago today on June 24th 2013 we arrived at Machu Picchu after an unforgettable six day trek in the mountains with Mountain Lodges of Peru, as we remember a time when travel was such a privilege, a privilege that I think we simply took for granted. Who knows when we will travel again in the same way, which is a good enough reason to look back to my post from seven years ago and enjoy the memories from our trip of a lifetime.
Machu Picchu – Trek Day 7 June 24, 2013
…Drum roll please! We made it; and what a day it has been. Up at 4:30, breakfast at 5:00; on the bus and up the hairpin road to Machu Picchu entering the site by 6:30, just before the sun came up. It is hard to put into words the impact, the drama and the beauty of this archeological wonder, but I’ll try. It really has to be seen to be believed. All the photographs, films and travelogues cannot really replace the experience of stepping into this other world and feeling nothing but total awe at what was achieved by a remarkable civilization hundreds of years ago. They were architects, astronomers, builders, masons, priests and artists of the most sophisticated kind and what they achieved here is quite simply awe-inspiring. As each new marvel revealed itself around every corner all one could think of was, “How did they do it?” How did they move those massive stones; how could they be so precise so that not even an eyelash could pass between them? As you will see this final day of our trek was a spectacular climax to a never-to-be-forgotten journey of a lifetime. Hopefully the pictures will do justice to our experience and tell the story of the day so that you are able to share it with us: the sunrise striking WaynaPicchu; the Incan terraces rising to incredible heights above us; the shadows of the tombs; the llamas strolling between the ruins; our exhausting climb to the top of WaynaPicchu in the morning and the long, long hike to Intipunku, the Sun Gate, in the afternoon. Our guide for the morning, Fernando, set the scene for the first two hours telling us the story of Machu Picchu in archeological terms but after that we were on our own and able to explore in our own time and at our own pace. Because we were staying an extra night we had to say goodbye to the wonderful members of our group who returned to Aguas Calientes for lunch in the middle of the day. I will acknowledge them all at the end of the blog because each one them helped to make the week so very special for us. After we had finally reached the Sun Gate around 4:00 pm we headed all the way back down to the entrance, exhausted, exhilarated and very grateful to have had the privilege of being able to spend a day in this wonder of the world.
Enjoy the pictures and if you would like to see the full post visit Machu Picchu – Trek Day 7
Prayer flags at Tiger’s Nest, BhutanMy way of saying thank you to Kelly who has treated us to her trip to Bhutan on her wonderful blog Compass and Camera, which she has posted every day since we all started sheltering in place, with her wish to add “a bit of light to the darkness as we get through the pandemic together.” The title perfect happiness is explained in Kelly’s post yesterday Tiger’s Nest, Bhutan, which I recommend everyone should read and enjoy.
Thank you Kelly for lighting our darkness these past few months.
Juneteenth 2020 19.6.20 Acrylic on paper 24″ x 36″
Inspired by the words of President Obama and in support of those marching for Equality, Justice and Freedom in New York and across America today, including here in Vancouver.
“Juneteenth is a time to recommit ourselves to the work that remains undone. We remember that even in the darkest hours, there’s cause to hope for tomorrow’s light.” Barack Obama, 2016.
Pacific Spirit Regional Park I – 25.5.20
Pacific Spirit Regional Park II – 25.5.20To celebrate this special anniversary for thechangingpalettte, yesterday and today in the studio I continued to create Art Works from our daily Park Walks in the beautiful Pacific Spirit Regional Park, which as you know I have featured regularly in the last few weeks since the pandemic started with photos and paintings.
Here’s a look back at the post that WordPress Discover featured for those of you who may not have seen it.
Photinia I 23.05.16
Today’s post is all about learning to find beauty and inspiration in the mundane chore of yard work on a holiday Monday.
Yesterday was Victoria Day here in Canada, the perfect time to prune the photinia and clean all of its dried leaves from the studio roof and gutter.
With the concrete cleaned and swept the afternoon was free for painting and photography in the studio with a rescued photinia branch making for the perfect subject…
and a few of the trimmed branches new tools for drawing with.
Now all I had to do was put the two together. What could be better than an ink drawing of the photinia created with one of its own branches?
Well, perhaps some additional watercolor to complete the picture…
and we’re almost there…
So ended a very satisfying day turning the hard work of yard work into art work.
to be continued…