Travel

End of June Sketches

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As much as I’d like to draw every day, I just refuse to force it and, instead, wait for wu wei to provide some inspiration.

Sometimes, I draw from life while other times from photos.  Either way, I wait till something about an image touches me, inspiring me to capture it.

It’s getting easier to draw people.  Even though my sketches aren’t perfect renditions of the subjects, the more I do them, the more confident I feel.

Still, each time I start, I’m certain that I’ll never be able to capture what I see.

Afterward, when I look at what I’ve drawn, I realize that, if nothing else, what I have captured is the inspiring spark that got me to reach for the pencils.

 

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Nor Cal Getaway

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It’s good to get away, to drive a couple hours north, to rent a room with a big ranch yard, a big orchard sky, a big yellow moon rising over hilltops, barbed-wire fencing glinting by the road.

A rooster cocks at dawn, calling out to crickets and frogs, the ground all green this early spring with March rains behind us.

I think of other artists, slipping away at dawn to the fields, setting up easels, writing their visions with color and line.

I join them now, clumsy with supplies, learning to keep the sun off my neck, to pencil-sketch quickly, to gently dab a sepia line, to stick with dry watercolor sticks, the texture and touch of the sketchbook pages.

Dry pigments without any water perfectly quench the still thirsty earth.