Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Sketches From Life

gesture drawing in conte of my horse, Scottie

Fall always goes by so quickly that before I know it, it's Christmas. Before any more time escapes me, I did want to update you on the latest from the studio in this brief post. So, here goes. 

Since my last post, I've been busy getting ready for and then going to Deer Camp with my husband at the old homestead and now with preparations for Thanksgiving. It's also time to plan ahead for Christmas and begin those preparations. 

In the meantime, Scottie turned up lame once again with another hoof abscess; his third in less than a year! The vet has put him on another supplement in hopes it will boost his immune system and keep him healthy over this winter. I also ordered and put to use new blankets for him. He now has quite a wardrobe of blankets for any weather to come and has been wearing them for the past month. All the old geezers at the barn are now blanketed, and so far the former juvenile delinquent, J Willie, has not managed to damage them. J Willie is finally growing up!

The  image at the top is one I did during the summer. It's a gesture drawing in conte of Scottie when I turned him out  briefly in a paddock by himself. He was constantly moving, so this was done in something like 15-20 seconds before he moved too much to go on. 

Most of what I do at Deer Camp is go through old art magazines while my husband is out in the woods hunting. Since I'm perpetually years behind on reading these magazines, I have no shortage of them to go through. I personally don't find the "how I did this painting" articles at all useful since all artists work differently. But there are other business and studio tips articles that are useful which makes it impossible for me to throw out these magazines without going through them.  

Our cat, Molly, sometimes lies down next to me on the couch while I'm reading, and this year I tried to do some sketches of her, too. But, every time I moved to a good spot to draw her, she got up and moved, too. So, I was reduced to doing some quick gesture drawings of her. Like Scottie, she only gave me mere seconds to get down enough information to be recognizable. Below are two pages from my sketchbook. They are crude, I know, but at least I made the effort! And, already I've rediscovered the value of doing sketches from life and want to get into the habit of daily sketching. Or, maybe weekly. 

Last night my riding buddy, Ann, and I had a good ride in the arena.  We have new footing which makes it much brighter, less dusty and softer under foot. I was delighted that Scottie seemed in really good spirits, was eager to work and moved right out without much urging. Perhaps he's now been on the supplements long enough to really benefit his joints and all his body systems. It's very encouraging that maybe this winter will be better than last year's and a reminder to keep him on the supplements from now on. 

We rode to some new age Christmas music which was fun and kind of magical.

When I'm at the barn, time just vanishes, and I treasure all those moments with my horse and barn friends. Last night I was the last to leave the barn. When I turned off the lights and stepped outside, it was pitch dark. I looked up into a sky filled with stars in every direction. There are no annoying yard lights out there to intrude on those moments when you feel that connection to the entirety of the universe. 

I just love those magical moments!

Gesture drawings in charcoal of our cat, Molly

Gesture drawing in charcoal of our cat, Molly