My first paintings evolved from these 2 stones and this image was one of the first of the Orkney paintings that I did in the mid 1980s. These stones are a constant in my life.
I know that is appears a year has passed since I added to my blog! Time is an elusive, quick moving thing when it wants to be so and it has choosen that speed for me. Last June – July was filled with my good friends from NY, Diane and Jerry, coming for a visit, a quick trip to my Danish friend, Birgit, for her son’s wedding, volunteering at the Ness of Brodgar archeological dig site and then a planned 2 week visit to the USA. However, due to a nagging and what I now accept as a chronic back condition, I arrived in the USA in severe pain. It was five months before I could return to Stromness following back surgery and a painful recuperation that lingered until nearly the 6 month anniversary of the surgery. However, I am now pain free and very grateful for that.
Pleased that the stones still stand and the sky is still wide. We had 2 brilliant weeks of sun and clouds but since mid week, the gray and wet has returned. It has been somewhat cold, but not like winter. Days have lengthened and if I pull an all nighter, it just never darkens.
This is the tallest and widest painting of a standing stone so far.
Time is moving along even more quickly than the days are growing longer. Each day is filled with relishing the view from my window and the walk under my feet. I have always been ahead of myself with the blog writing and the news posted has been past news. Suddenly, it is a month since I posted a blog and I realize that I have shared little of my painting. So….this is a blog to put things into perspective. I am going to insert photos of the work I have done…the smaller or freestanding ones. Most are on exhibit at the Waterfront Gallery in Stromness for their Spring show. The largest one may go to Woodwick House for display until it has a better home with the panorama I am in progress with.
Hung from reclaimed wood, "It is Always About the Journey"This one curve of Hoy is rarely back lit. Only when the fog or snow or rain is just behing, can one see the trees along the ridge line.Likefingers, this island reaches out.
Underneath the snow, the earth is always ready for ploughing!
It is January 22, and the moon is still pretty full. The moonlight has been bold and bright enough to light the path for a midnight walking of the dog. It cast bright shadows through closed drapes that beckoned me to leave them open. And the sea has had the most extreme tides. I have seen bits of shore and white waves that have been hidden until now.
The grass appears to be turning green. With the daylight lasting longer, it feels like spring is around the corner, yet I have heard folks say that the winter could still be upon us in March. But the farmers had said that in December they would go out and turn over the fields. That meant to me, that the ground would be soft enough, not frozen for months like I am used to knowing in New York. And now I hear that there is a deep freeze in US. I remember not too long ago, when a winter came and went and I never had to look out my warm winter jacket. It was warm the entire winter. Now it seems I have escaped to a Florida of sorts, for by comparison, my temperatures have been balmy. They say it is the island way. The currents surrounded by the sea make things mild.
Last week I went to two events hosted by the Scottish Women’s Rural Institute. Just looking them up, it seems the idea came from Canada where it was successfully underway for about 20 years before the idea was brought to Scotland. Its intent was to provide a way for women in isolated areas to come together for the sharing of social and creative activities and that would also preserve some of the local crafts. Seems it got its hold in Scotland around 1917, the same time that the Provincetown Print, or watercolor white-line woodcut came into vogue in Massachusetts. The Provincetown printmakers did get together in 1915 and women were the majority of the participants.
A watercolor white-line woodblock print of the Ring of Brodgar
I mention the watercolor white-line woodcut because that is the technique that I have brought to Orkney through the Art Adventures I set up in 2005. It is also a technique that has interested many folks on Orkney. The other event I attended involving the SWRI, was a meeting with me and my white-line prints as a topic of interest. And folks were interested yet again. They seemed interested in setting up a workshop time in their community center and I am happy to oblige. Now that I have collected all my supplies, it would be great to put them to some good use!
You might be interested in the Scottish Women’s Rural Institute, so here is the link www.swri.org.uk.