Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Holiday Eclipse

Paperwhite Narcissus, 6 x 6

Don't the holidays totally eclipse everything? Today was my first day back at the easel after several weeks of festivities and honestly, it was like starting over! After several wipeoffs of a larger canvas (and I mean multiple, full wipedowns), I decided to just try something small and ease my way back. HAPPY NEW YEAR!

PS - We had a wonderful Christmas visit with our family in Georgia - it was worth it! :)

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Big Bend finale

Desert Ocotillo, 6 x 8
This is my last Big Bend painting. I painted this typical desert scene along the Maverick Road, a "drive at your own risk" washboard with very few takers on this particular day. The light kept changing and everything looked completely different 30 minutes later. That's the fun - seeing all the different faces and colors of a place. It was a great trip...

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Ghost Town

Sunlit Pueblo, 12 x 12

Terlingua (a quirky little town just outside of Big Bend National Park) has a the remnants of a ghost town - an old mining village. There is still enough left of the old pueblos to fuel the imagination of life in another time. And because they are made of the earth, they appear to be truly part of the landscape.

A little bit of history: Mercury-bearing ore was discovered in Terlingua in the 1800's. The mining population grew from 300 to 1000 by the turn of the century and they even had a post office. "Terlingua" means "three languages" because the inhabitants spoke 3 different languages. The mine was closed in 1905.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Cottonwoods in the Desert

Cottonwood Oasis, 12 x 12

Cottonwoods at Sunset, 12 x 12

Driving through the desert, I was amazed to see some trees changing color. These cottonwoods thrive next to streams and creeks, and I found their appearance in an otherwise starker landscape very compelling.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Terlingua Creek

Dry Creek Canyon, 12 x 16

This is another piece from my Big Bend trip. Terlingua Creek runs through the town of Terlingua and empties into the Rio Grande. It's pretty low right now but it fills up fast when the rain finally comes.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Santa Elena Canyon

Canyon Reflections, 12 x 12

Santa Elena Canyon is breath-taking - a massive wall of rock that has been cut through by the flowing river over millions of years. On this particular morning I loved how the sun lit up the rock (although it came and went) and how the reflections shimmered.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Rio Grande River

Snaking Rio Grande, 12 x 16

Another angle of the Tex-Mex borderline... right now the Rio Grande is high and flowing fast, although sometimes you can go there and see almost no water at all. (The flow is controlled by a dam in Mexico according to local water needs.) From high on a hillside it looks quiet and peaceful as it meanders through the land - but it is a rushing force of power.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Back from the Big Bend

Mountain Divide, 12 x 16

I spent last week painting in the Big Bend National Park with two wonderfully inspired painters Jill Carver and Kraig Kiedrowski. For me, it was kind of a "last hurrah" for the year and a peaceful interlude between holiday festivities. If you haven't been to Big Bend, I will be posting images over the next week for you to catch a glimpse. It is a diverse place of deserts, mountains, rivers and a little bit of the wild, wild west.
Pictured above: The Rio Grande River divides Texas and Mexico - land on the right side of the river is Texas; land on the left is Mexico.