Saturday, March 03, 2007

winter beehives

I am staying at my father's house in the country, where it has just begun to snow. My dog Umber and I took a walk up the hill to the edge of the property, where my dad keeps his beehives. They look dormant and inactive, as the bees are sluggish this time of year. Brush has grown up around the hives over the years, but I have always liked the way they stand out against the dark green of the pine trees.

ohio evening

I made the last-minute decision to travel to Ohio to visit my father and brother (and my brother's new puppy). Passing through southern Ohio between Cincinnati and Columbus, the clouds were incredible. The sky is so big in this flat country, and the sky was a constant drama, all the way through Kentucky and Ohio. There is nothing like a long car trip with fresh CDs and my canine companion to inspire adventure and a change of scenery.

dark day

This Thursday in Nashville the schools closed early for fear of tornadoes and storms that were expected to pass through. By midday, the streets were almost deserted in my part of town as everyone prepared for the coming deluge...which never really came. We had a bit of rain, some nice dark clouds, but overall it was anticlimactic. I did get a glimpse of the oak in the backyard, tinted a glossy black. The shadows accentuated the pale green lichens growing on the trunk, and thankfully, I could enjoy the dark mood from the safety of my studio.

looking up

In apology for my delayed posts this week, I have been unable to access my site for the last few days, so I am finally catching up. This piece was inspired by a "drive-by" photo I took through the moonroof of my car as I was driving in downtown Nashville on Wednesday.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

cowan street

At one time, I looked at this building on Cowan Street almost every day, and I always wanted to paint it. It had peeling paint the color of copper after it oxidizes, a bright turquoise green. It looked different every day, set against the backdrop of the very dramatic skies we tend to have here in Middle Tennessee. One day I came by to find that it had been painted tan; boring, beige tan. It was a lesson in grasping the opportunity in the moment...I would never get to paint that beautiful blue-green! It still has a structure and a loneliness about it, even if its color has been washed to neutral.

Monday, February 26, 2007

thai yoga

Today I received a thai yoga massage, an ancient practice of monks preparing one another for long meditation sessions. Unlike some forms of massage, thai yoga focuses on energy lines rather than a mostly physical approach. The main point (and hardest thing for me to do) is to relax. One time I opened my eyes a little an saw this vision of the practitioner (my fiancee Derek) deeply focused with the perfect oak tree in the window behind him. I knew at once that I wanted to paint that image today.

Sunday, February 25, 2007


I saw some beautiful paintings this week of skies with a very slight suggestion of land beneath them, and I was inspired to try my hand at a similar composition. I have often wanted to experiment with the sky itself as subject, since most of my work focuses on the land.