Saturday, July 21, 2012

Mid July Update

It has been too long since I updated the blog, my excuse is that it has been to hot to draw. That isn't totally true we have had some lovely days, but we have also had some really hot and muggy ones, whatever I have not been motivated to do much drawing. This week the heat finally broke with some nasty thunderstorms and I finally felt ready to do some drawing. Even if I haven't been drawing I have been walking and photographing my favorite sanctuaries so have images to draw and some interesting photos to show.

The above Journal page is from two sanctuaries that I visited in one day. Two images are from Daniel Webster in Marshfield and the third is from the North Hill Marsh in Duxbury, MA.

The top drawing is of a wood strawberry in bloom. This year the strawberries bloomed like crazy in some areas of Daniel Webster, showing as white stars against the green ground cover. So far no ripe berries but I have been watching and hoping to at least sample one or two. Note the 3 leaves, not as glossy or as large as poison ivy leaves, but I suppose it would be possible to confuse the 2 plants. I suggest a hands off policy unless you really know your plants.

The drawing on the lower left is of the Little Blue Heron that seems to have taken up residence at Daniel Webster this summer. I have caught a least a glimpse of it (or another) on every visit I have made to the sanctuary since I think May. Sometimes all I see is a glimpse before it disappears back into the reeds that grow around the islands and edges of the panne. This day it was mostly visible off to one side of the panne, though too far away for a really good photograph.

The last drawing is of a Pipsissewa plant in bloom in the woods at North Hill Marsh. The flowers look somewhat similar to the Spotted Wintergreen (a relative), but the the Pipsissewa plants have multiple whorled leaves and they are a solid green without a white stripe in the center of the leaf.

Above is the page from another visit to Daniel Webster, this one on July 2nd. I will be doing a lot of drawings of the tree stump in the Panne, it is a way for me to document water levels. Since it has been hot with not a lot of rain so far this summer the water level in the Panne has been dropping from week to week. Drawings of the stump will document the changing water levels.

My second image is of a pair of mating Monarch Butterflies that I saw on my visit. The Monarchs were here early this year, I don't usually notice seeing them until toward the end of July. I wonder how that will impact the migration generation, the ones that should be flying down to Mexico for the winter. These ended up in a field of tall grasses and I have to admit it was fun to see them.

Despite my lack of other drawing I have been attending my usual Monday night life sessions so as a catch up I am posting a couple of the drawings I have made these past few weeks.

Scott is away at School for 8 weeks and the sessions are being run by one of the models. We are getting some different poses and lighting during this period. I am not complaining, Scott does prefer some poses over others so the change has been kind of fun. The base she is lying on is normally used for the Tuesday night short pose sessions, but it is a way to raise the model and for us to have different from usual poses.

I don't have much to say the drawings, they are what they are. The studio thankfully has AC, which is good because otherwise with the lights and the number of artists who come to draw it would get unbearable, it still gets warm, but we have fans so it doesn't get too bad.

I have been making lots of photographs so picking just 2 to post wasn't easy. I don't like to post too many photographs at once, I think people can only really absorb a limited number of images at a time, and if I were to put up more people wouldn't really look at any of them with just a couple of images I like to think people will take the time to really look at them.

The one above was made on a rainy day early in July at Daniel Webster. I just like the image of the flying bird against the stormy sky with a few stalks of grass seed heads in the foreground. It is almost monochromatic.

I really like this second photograph, I think it is one of the best butterfly photographs I have made, not just this year but last year also. This is a Spicebush swallowtail butterfly on a blooming milk weed plant. A lucky photo as the butterfly only gave me time for a couple photos before it flew off.

That is it for today. I won't make any promises about when I will post again. The heat saps most of my energy and I am not sure when the temps will go back up and knock me flat. Since it is only the middle of July I know it will come back. In the meantime I hope everyone in the States is staying as cool as they can and enjoying the summer. Oh yes, comments are always welcome.