Friday, November 19, 2010

Forest Glen

I thought I would write about where I live, because it's a pretty interesting place. It's now called the National Park Seminary. I'll give some history of it another time, but essentially it was an abandoned school campus from the late 1800s.

The land contains a lot of interesting buildings, including a Japanese pagoda, a Dutch Windmill, a Spanish Villa, and a small castle. Many of the statues scattered around the grounds are still there as well.

This is the abandoned Spanish Villa. In the foreground are stones stairs and a well. I love how you can still see the landscaping, now overgrown and wild. You can even pick out the same pines from this old picture.

This is one of the large statues on the property, probably my favorite one. It's back faces an old road that I like to walk down. Songbirds feed on the road, hawks hunt along it, and deer, foxes and raccoons live in the nearby woods. It is a good place to look for wildlife.

You can see how large and impressive the statue is from this old picture. It's size makes very surreal and a little creepy as it looms over the shrubs and stares into the woods. This place is melancholy. It feels like something out of Lord of the Rings or Hellboy.

More later...

Monday, November 15, 2010

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

New linocut. Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

This is one of the reference photos I took. It's feeding holes look like someone fired a mini cartoon machine gun into the tree.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Wolf Paintings

The other evening i was taking a walk and saw a red fox trotting through the woods and across an old road. This new sighting has only fueled my new obsession with wolves and foxes.

I think one of the hardest things about painting wildlife, especially foxes and wolves, is not making a cheesy painting. Here's a couple really nice (and not cheesy) wolf paintings that have been inspiring me.

The Black Wolf of the Currumpaw (1894) by Ernest Thompson Seton

This one was painted by Danna Ray, a fellow artist selling on Etsy. Take a look at her awesome work here:

This one just makes me really happy.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Carolina Wren

I painted this watercolor of a Carolina Wren over the weekend. They are funny little birds. I watched one this morning on an old well and stone wall, peeking its head into every little nook and crevice. Sometimes it looks like they dart around exploring just for fun.

Also, they sound like a tiny squeak toy being rapidly squeezed.

This is a photo I took last winter of one.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Ocean Creature Series

I just finished this series of fun little ocean creatures. These were fun mini watercolors to paint and very minimal planning was involved. I started doodling in little 3x3" squares which became these paintings.
I drew stuff like this a lot when I was a kid, especially sharks and anemones.