Sorry I have been gone from this site for so long – I’m back – and preparing for a show. I’m still working on the Monotype landscape / cloudscape series. It remains challenging and gratifying – let me know what you think – here is todays post – “Southern Sky”, 18″x24″ image size, ink on paper. Available. Look for the next post in a day or two. Thanks for staying with me! Leigh
Greetings and Happy Spring! Our Star Magnolias, Flowering Plums and other budding trees are full of white blossoms and silver leaf buds – even though we had wet snow flurries and hail three days ago – Spring is moving into full view! Brilliant white blossoms blowing in the wind, mixed up with snow – the whole scene was mesmerizing and surreal – I could not clearly see or focus on any one thing. This monotype attempts to express these sensations. I remember a wonderful Japanese woodblock print that so eloquently expressed Plum blossoms amidst falling snow. “Spring” 18″ x 24″
For the most part, western Washington is beautiful, bountiful and all summer my garden boasts the best green grazing at lunchtime. However, weeks on end of dark days, heavy skies and bone-chill slushy rain is NOT fun. In fact, it’s miserable. In my studio, I enjoy a balmy 64 degrees, but my husband’s wooden boat shop has no heat to speak of – board&batten walls on a cement floor – a damp cement floor – I’m definitely making chili today – hot, HOT chili!
This day makes me think of many 19thc Dutch landscape paintings; beautiful, grey and quiet. And, reminds me of many same-vintage Dutch interior scenes; velvety black interiors lit by candle light or a solitary shaft of day penetrating blown glass panes. From the Left, a clear band crosses a tile floor to illuminate a single idea. Some of the paintings Van Gogh did of shoes and so forth – even “Potato Eaters” have similar qualities – an artistic inheritance also seen in his brushwork.
“Hands” (secondary title: “In Prayer”) 1995 is a monotype I did a while back when teaching at Bradley University (Peoria IL) It’s part of my own collection and holds significance for me – a reflection of a part of my own odd journey.
We were told the next day that a 4.2 earthquake had happened during the night. “Go up to the caldera tonight – should be some activity”, our host said. We did. Watching the daylight fade and the lava light grow was amazing – especially when it was dark enough to see the red glow pulse – like a heartbeat – only deeper and longer between events. In the chilly Sulpherous air, a young Park Ranger played wonderful Ukulele tunes – making the experience rather complete. Standing there reminded me of a friend in Alaska, overwhelmed by a huge Aurora Borealis he was privileged to witness – a crown of color that took him by surprise, alone in the cold wilderness. We can’t forget these things – they are moments perched on an edge, moments of transformation.This work does not illustrate either of these events, but perhaps may represent the heat and cold, and sense of explosive power.
We finally took a vacation in nearly 10 years. Hawaii is a fascinating place, geographically, historically and spiritually. Though it was a rainy season, it was warm and embracing. The winter rain acting more like kisses than frigid stings. We traveled all around the island in a big circle, spending time in Hilo, Volcanic park, Inn at the Falls and finally Kona. Moving through so many climate zones is such close proximity was amazing and surreal, as were the buckles, folds and caves of lava, rainforest trees and desert shrubs. Standing at the most southern point in the U.S. and looking toward the visual edge of the earth toward 2500 miles of ocean, I understand why so many feel free and outside of the “no-fly” zone.
“Shifting Flow” 18″ x 24″ Monotype. A visual story about a journey- “my kayak, slides through it into a beautiful place full of snow and ice where a shifting glacier is barely seen, receding. My spine feels the cold, deep water, 1/4 inch from my body. They know I am here. Bus-sized creatures glide silently under – and I, in a swaddling of thin synthetic layers – under which I am utterly naked”.