Sunday, April 29, 2012

Where I Stand Sunday and New Pastels

Just about ready to drop these crutches - maybe by tomorrow.
This isn't easy for me.
I have just a speck of faith in my muscles, which are being exercised several times a day.  PT is great - everyone should have PT in their life. 
When I get all done with this rehab,
I hope to maintain a regimen of daily exercise which includes
bone and muscle strengthening.
This older body of mine, can't take another break like this one.
Tuesday I get to exercise in the Therapy POOL!!

Here is the finished pastel from last week.
"Along the Walkway - Atitlan Gardens"
(seems I like to name everything with the word 'sunshine' lately,
can you believe I was thinking in the "Atitlan Sunshine"?)
8" x 9"
pastel on Canson

I have a new 'grandpuppy' - Wally - who is a Chesapeake Bay Retriever
and lives in Colorado, so I haven't seen him yet. 
From his photos he is a doll and a half and
seems to be growing like a weed.
I couldn't resist capturing his early puppyhood.
Dig those moss colored green eyes?

"Wally"
9" x 12" pastel
on Strathmore pastel paper
Where I Stand Sunday is an ongoing photo essay examining the different places I spend my life standing.
Too often we take for granted the everyday places we spend our lives walking on.
There are several others who also write this on Sunday, see sidebar.

 

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Where I Stand Wednesday

SPECIAL ADDITION - Where I Stand 
Thought I would share my excitement with you!  Legs are up on my chair..but the left one can now - more comfortably - attempt to walk -without schlogging along in the cumbersome CAM boot and I can wear my other shoe, so my hips aren't gimping along, one higher than the other.  Crutches are still in the mix...but soon to be thrown to the side.  Lots more exercises, since I have compromised my right scapula (scapula dysfunction) during all this pulling up incorrectly and crutches walking.  I can feel the load lifted a little..I can see the light again. 

Monday, April 23, 2012

What's ON and OFF the Studio Easel

"Spring Feeding"
8" x 9 1/2"
pastel on burgundy Canson
Gestation for polar bears (ursus maritimus) is 8 months, where the mother slips into a spot beneath the snow in a slowed metabolic state.  Upon birthing her young and emerging from the den, the cubs need to eat often. The mother's milk is rich in fat, provided she is able to catch food and eat for herself. The cubs will stay with their mom until they are about 2 1/2 years old.

Making up for lost studio time, I began another pastel.  These are flower pots that appeared in many places on the garden walkways at Hotel Atitlan, at Lake Atitlan, Guatemala.  More work to do on it..but I needed to let my colors 'fly' a little after the three pieces in the polar bear series.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Where I Stand Sunday

Check last Sunday and this post would have the same photo of
my pseudo-walking with crutches.
Working on another pastel in the studio, but not finished.
While looking through my photos, I picked a theme to share for today.
These are older pieces.  I often practice portraiture with magazine photos
and royalty free, non-copyright sources.
"Conversation"
pastel

"Dressed in Red"
pastel

"NY Times"
colored pencil
Where I Stand Sunday is an ongoing photo essay examining the different places I spend my life standing.
Too often we take for granted the everyday places we spend our lives walking on.
There are several others who also write this on Sunday, see sidebar.



Friday, April 20, 2012

Number 2 in the Polar Bear series in pastel

"Subzero Sunshine"
5" x 11"
SOLD
pastel on grey Canson paper
Polar bears live 'largely' on the frozen landscape. This one is out for a stroll looking for a meal.  I couldn't resist the temptation to put a smile on his muzzle.
Love painting these animals in pastel..there is such a variety of color in their fur.


Monday, April 16, 2012

A Polar Bear in Pastel

"
"Pursuit"
7" x 10"
pastel on Canson paper
I have to say, that watching the "Frozen Planet" series on the Discovery Channel has inspired me to do arctic animals lately.  The use of pastels translate those 'northern lights' or 'intense reflection of the sun' feel, with snow covered scenes.
Polar bears live a harsh life.  Males travel alone..looking for food or females, depending on what time of year it is, battling for whatever they need.  I am doing a series of them.  I love being able to add extra color to their fur.  We always think 'white' in a polar bear, but I am enjoying adding the extra colors I see in sun and shadow against the stark white, almost blue, snow.   

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Where I Stand Sunday

Yes, I am back to 'standing'!  Been out in the studio (where I sit) for a little bit every day for the last 3 days...today, storms were brewing again, so had to come in, not to be caught on the driveway in the wind and the rain..navigation goes all to hell.
Feels good to be at this stage, getting there but still a long way to go.
Able to put almost half weight on my left leg.  My arms and armpits are 'toast' with these crutches.  Didn't use the walker..it was too weird -
it didn't work the way I had envisioned it. So crutches it is!

The little dog that I painted above, (in my blog banner) Lucky, was here with her owners over
Easter.  A few days ago, back in New Mexico, she was on a hike with my sister-in-law, got into a chase of a deer herd, and didn't return as the other two dogs did.  She's missing, but she's a survivor. We are crossing our fingers that she is found..safe and alive.
Come home, Lucky!!
(Update:  Sadly - I have to report that Lucky is no longer with us.  She chased the deer so far and for so long. She was found about 20 yards from the top of the canyon on a deer trail, lying beneath a bush. 
June figured she was exhausted and dehydrated and
just couldn't make it up the deer trail out of the very steep canyon to the top of the mesa. 
We ALL will miss this sprite of a dog, full of energy and spunk. 
Her spirit inspired me.)

Where I Stand Sunday is an ongoing photo essay examining the different places I spend my life standing.
Too often we take for granted the everyday places we spend our lives walking on.
There are several others who also write this on Sunday, see sidebar.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

A Watercolor of Penguins

"Three Amigos"
7" x 10 1/2"
watercolor on Strathmore
Lots of variety of watercolor applications used here: Neocolor crayons by Caran d'Ache, Derwent Inktense watercolor pencils and a variety of watercolor tubes, spray bottle with blue and purple, and white gouache. This was a fun one and turned out a little more like a design - all the while I was thinking more of "realism". 
AND..I sat at the kitchen table to paint it today, instead of the studio as all the watercolor equipment is still inside the house.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Almost Standing Monday

My in-laws visited from New Mexico - Easter Eve and Easter.
Standing behind me is a person (my sister-in-law, June) who has broken both ankles, separate times...same place, same hiking trail..the last one required ORIF (open reduction, internal fixation) surgery like mine.  Two and a half years later there are NO signs that she had these breaks or this surgery.  She hikes daily and rides her horse among many other physical activities.  She is my inspiration. I am one of those - "if she can do it, so can I" - people.  It's been 60 days without one 'step' on my left leg.  My muscles have atrophied to about nothing.  We are getting ready to begin the "physical therapy stage" of this ordeal..
and I say WE, because beside me all the way is that guy to my right. 

Love, compassion and understanding are a couple of things, but when care is needed that goes beyond those 'givings'...he has been there ALL the way.  I am talking about the sleepless nights, encouragement when it seems like the sky is falling all around me, helping me deal with pain and daily care, prepping meals, always thinking of me - first - helping me do about everything but breathe....and then reminding me to.  I am a lucky person, for as old as this whole ordeal has become for me, I know it's become twice as much for him - but you wouldn't know it.  I am stronger because I have had his shoulders to stand on.  It's always been that way.  Most importantly, now I am going to work on my own strength, so I can 'pay it back'.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Finished Watercolor

"International Sunshine"
9" x 12"
watercolor and gouache on Strathmore
This is another painting that I will submit to the "Chrome, Smoke and Flames" artshow in Russell in the fall.  I find old autos sitting in fields to be intriquing.  This one is from the 50's era.  Can't say for sure if it is an R series or an L series, as I don't have a good view to study the grill from the photo.  Oops, I just saw I left out the "International" plate just to the left of the door edge.  Will get that in and a better photo soon.
Where I stand?  I am still not standing, nothing has changed, but soon it will.