Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Year and Updates

First I want to wish everyone a Happy New Year for 2012, may it be a year of good health, friends and events.

Above is a sketch I made yesterday while waiting for it to be time for me to leave my Sisters for the airport. It is a Western Tarsier from a photograph in the November issue of National Geographic. I love the Canon ads in National Geographic and have often used them as reference for practice drawings. The little guy looks like he was smiling at the camera, I know not likely but it is cute.

Last week my sister and I visited a couple of Chicago's excellent Museums. The image below is from the Chicago Art Institute.

The images are of three quilts that were on exhibit in the the recently renovated Fiber/Textile area. Last year they had tapestries, this year the space was devoted to early american textiles. The Textiles were mostly woven bedspreads but the exhibit did include a few of the Museum's early American (prior to 1840) quilts. All three quilts in my image were beautifully quilted. I love the non standard borders on the Blazing Star quilt, and the half block edging on the blue and white quilt. Isn't it too bad that we can't ask the maker why she used half blocks for both the top and left side prior to adding the border of flying geese I don't know many modern quilters who would do that.

The exhibit also included a beautiful white on white quilt that had trapunto done in some of the quilting designs. The three quilts I photographed were the ones I liked best. The actual photos aren't wonderful, the gallery has fairly low lighting and I didn't use a flash so the images aren't as crisp as I would have preferred.  The exhibit also included some hat veils and worked samplers, most beautiful and all interesting to see.

We also took a day to visit the Chicago Natural History Museum.

The museum this year had a special exhibit on Whales that was most interesting. Photographs were not allowed in the special exhibit so you will just have to take my word for it. We also visited the Egyptian exhibit but to be honest I was feeling a bit claustrophobic by then so we didn't stay long. The museum was extremely crowded, which made it difficult to spend much time viewing items on display. I sort of wished we had been able to visit before Christmas but that wasn't possible.

The above photo shows Sue, the museum's famous Tyrannosaurus Rex skeleton.

Below is a Nature Journal page from my visit to Daniel Webster the day before I left for Chicago.

Daniel Webster as a former farm has lots of open grassy areas. The sketches this week are the seed heads of three different grasses. The middle grass grows in a somewhat marshy area and is fairly tall, over 3 feet. The other two were growing in more typical farm land areas and are shorter.

The day of my visit was chilly, we had had a cold weekend so there was ice edging the ponds and even at the edges of the River. The photograph below shows the river lined with trees and some ice.

That is it for today, per usual comments are welcome, and I hope to get back to my regular update schedule now that I am back home from vacation.