Thursday, September 15, 2011

Mushrooms and Journals

Above is the initial pencil drawing I did of the mushrooms I photographed in Great Blue Hill's Reservation last week. Not a bad design but not wonderful either, very ordinary with the clump in the center of the drawing.

Below is the actual photograph I was working from.

I wish I could figure out what these mushrooms are, but there are various yellow/orange mushrooms that grow in clumps, and so far I have only guesses but no positive I.D. If anyone reading knows I would love a suggestion.

Anyway I had sketched these same mushrooms in the Field Journal, and as I was scanning the journal page for a blog update, I realized that I preferred the crop I used in the Journal to the one in the above drawing. Thankfully in this day and age you don't have to actually redraw a sketch to make changes to it, esp. when those changes are only size and scale. So I scanned the drawing, brought the scan into Photoshop and played around with it. The photograph below shows some of the printouts I did of that play.

Sorry for the poor quality of the photo, I was using an old small camera and the batteries didn't want to support the flash. Still I think you get the general idea. I increased the size of my drawing and moved it around the rectangle to view various crops. I don't think I will tell you which one I decided on. I am in the process of transferring it over to good paper and will hopefully have an update if not this weekend then next week for you.

Below are a couple of my Field Journal pages from this past week.

Last Saturday I went over to Borderland State Park in Easton, MA for another visit. The drawings above are either materials I picked up in the park or an interesting site that I noticed during this visit.

The top image is a Shag Bark Hickory leaf, with a couple of Hickory nuts, one without its protective case and the other with part of it still on. Hickory nuts are yummy to eat, but the nuts are small and hard with not a lot of meat in them. Native Americans used them as a food source, and would certainly have known every tree in their territory. The squirrels also love the nuts so I was amazed at the number that were on the ground below this tree. Still the tree is in an area of high people/dog traffic so that may be keeping the squirrels away.

The next leaf drawn is of a White Oak, I picked this one up in the woods. Most of the forests I visit are a mixture of Eastern White Pine, various oaks, and some Beeches. I am trying in the Journal to document the various varieties of trees in each location.

The last drawing is a bit of a mystery, not the drawing the structure. Someone/sometime went to a lot of effort to build this small stone structure. It is about 4 feet high and wide, and maybe 4 or 5 feet deep (will have to pay better attention the next time I visit the park). The area in front of it looks like it could have been a house foundation at one time. Anyway it is too small for any livestock to have been penned in it, except chickens, and I can't see anyone doing that, it would be very hard to clean out. There is no mortar between the stones, but that top stone is very large and really the whole was very well constructed. It is built into a hillside so there is earth around the back and sides. I hadn't noticed this on my prior visits (and yes I had walked by the area before) but some of the undergrowth is beginning to die back so this time I did notice, a puzzlement.

My Journal pages from Monday's visit to Daniel Webster:

The top sketch is of the log they have in the pond. Water level in the pond was up this past Monday from all the rain we had had the previous week and I wanted to document it.  I had drawn this log before when the water level was much lower, quite a change. As usual a couple of turtles were sun bathing when I arrived.

The bottom sketch is from a photo I made just as I was leaving the sanctuary. A crow was sitting on the fence near the road and another was sitting on top of the visitor building. Not my best drawings of crows, but it sort of works.

Enough for today, this ended up longer then I expected it to be. Per usual comments are welcome. Thanks for reading.