Saturday, September 21, 2013

The Contented Sigh of Autumn

Webs cover the Yaupon bush.
This is the time of year when nature offers up a lovely vignette every single day; something to marvel at, inspire us and encourage us to want to learn more. It would appear at The Crooked Little House, nature is pushing Halloween. All my little arachnids are busy casting silk all over the Yaupon bushes and corners of the house. Even the skies begin to boil with wondrous storybook clouds that sometimes hang on through the darkest hours.

Tucked into the corner for an afternoon siesta.
The other night I noticed moonshine like a slick coating over the deck and fallen leaves on the walkway. I stepped outside and followed the light source to the almost full moon just to the east of the roof line and almost overhead. The sky was thick with gyrating cloud formations tinted in orange from the moonshine. The orb would appear from the clouds then disappear then reappear again, taunting me until I gave in and ran to gather my sketchbook and paints. I settled outside in the crisp air to do some color sketches. I later found out that a close friend of mine who is a photographer had run out of her house too in an effort to capture the same image.
One of the quick sketches en plein air.

I find it very tricky painting outside at night, especially under the moonlight. When viewed inside, the colors are never quite what I think I had laid down, yet the sketch usually ends up being full of depth and quite true color-wise. Plus it's just a lot of fun in a challenging kind of way. Autumn will offer me loads of vibrant cloud formations and magical nightscapes to paint. I can't wait till tonight!

"The love of form is a love of endings."
                                   Louise Gluck


  1. Nocturne painting....
    Nocturne letter writing...
    Your results are admirable...I'll have to try mine and let you know:)

  2. Thanks Patricia. Try it, it's a blast!

  3. These webs are fascinating. we see them on the ground across the riparian sections of the farm - east and west. the spider comes out of the tunnel and gets its prey. Clever! But, I have never seen them covering a bush. :)

  4. Nice to hear from you. I have never seen them on the ground! Just got your letter and I have lots to tell you. Will write very soon.

  5. Liz .. I very much enjoyed our chat at Glenn's birthday bash on Saturday. As always, it was so good to see you. I'm loving your new work . . always so creative fresh. I'm always amazed at what you can come up with, and enjoy seeing every piece, older or new. You have a great idea in working with larger companies to feature your art, and hope it all works out for you. I look forward to seeing you again and sharing ideas, and hearing about new projects. Doug Brannon

    1. Wonderful to see you too as always. We need to get together more often Doug and share ideas. Thanks for the compliments. Check out this book:
      I'd Rather Be in the Studio by Alyson Stanfield. I think you'd enjoy it.