Sunday, March 29, 2015

Nature Journal, Still Life and Madonna


For the moment I am all caught up with the Nature Journal drawings. Above is my last one and is for a visit to Daniel Webster in Sept 2013. I am happy to have finally finished these as they have been hanging over my head so to speak since I stop making notes on my visits to various locations.

The drawings above are of the usual tree stump, though on this visit the water in the Panne was at the lowest level I had ever seen it at. It had been a fairly dry summer, but I do recall being shocked at how little water was left, esp as the last time I had visited in June it had been at the highest level I had ever seen. I speculated that they might have tried to drain some of the water out, a mistake since the summer had turned out very dry. I haven't been back since that visit, and while I want to go back I think I still need to wait just a bit longer to make sure the snow is gone from the paths.

The next drawing is of a Cabbage White Butterfly on some fall New England Asters, and an image of a couple of apples growing on one of the apple trees in the old orchard. The trees aren't taken care of in any way, so the apples are not pretty and I doubt they would be very good to eat. The deer love them though and will eat whatever falls.


Above is a pen and ink still life done for the March WetCanvas Pen and Ink forum monthly challenge. Haven't done one of these for a while, not sure exactly why, I download the challenge images and print them out but never seem to get around to doing the drawing. This one was done with my technical pens on another half sheet of the Utrecht paper with no under drawing.


I was in Boston at the MFA on Tuesday and for my Museum sketch I made the above. The statue is a medieval wooden Madonna. The infant Jesus doesn't look very child like, which was typical of that era, and both figures have lost parts. A hand in the case of the Madonna and parts of hands and feet in the case of Jesus. It was a fairly quick sketch and I certainly missed capturing her expression, mine doesn't look very happy at all. Ah well I should of spent more time on her but I kept being distracted by performances of Sonic Blossom that were taking place in a gallery not far from the one I was in.

Sonic Blossom is performance art, a singer selects a museum visitor, guides them to a chair that has been set up in one of the larger galleries and then sings to them. They use a tape player of some sort to provide the background music for the singer who on the day I was there was a lovely Soprano.


The statue I was drawing is above, I was seated on a bench which is slightly to the right of the statue so I had a slightly different view of the pair.


I spent some of that visit in the European art Galleries paying attention to the composition rules that most of the paintings seemed to adhered to, triangles, with the most important figure at the apex of the triangle. The painting above is by a French painter, which I didn't make note of, but was painted about a member of Louis XIII court who was a friend of Cardinal Richelieu, through that friendship he was the power behind the throne.

Note the most unusual composition, the lone figure on the right with the bowing courtiers on the left, they and the staircase all pointing to this one figure, giving him prominence and making him the focal point of the painting, as he was in the court.


Last but not least a photograph of Boston Common looking west, notice that enough snow has melted that ground is actually visible in some spots. The day I was there they were taking down the barriers for the skating rink at Frog Pond, and in the Garden they were trimming trees, both also signs of spring.

That is it for today, per usual comments are welcome.