Taking a breath while tense times for seasoned citizens continue, I look for inspirations so I can keep doing and making on the  shortened leash we silver saints have been advised to adopt.

I love another encouragement from The Garden of Bright Images.

taking a breath

Artwork: Harold Knight

 Or, as President TR said: Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.

What I can do is turn off the news and look for inspiration to imitate, to grow my soul, so to speak.  Reporters  are edgier than I am on the second week of this  steroid; which is granting me a respite.

Taking a deep breath, then, I am grateful I am not quarantined on a cruise ship, unable to disembark. This keeps me turning back to painting. And writing.

For now, I can learn a little more painting by copying favorite paintings. Wildlife is not my first choice.  But, recently, our daughter introduced us to a highly stylized wildlife artist, Charley Harper.

His Baltimore oriole delighted me! You know, I have never seen our state bird, ever; even as others have described and depicted its plumage and habitat.

Then I remembered that J.J. Audubon painted the oriole. A picture is worth a bunch of words; an Audubon is worth oh so much more!

taking a breath

Audubon’s Orioles

He kept at his craft through crazier times than today!  John James Audubon grew up in turbulent times, and through much sorrow and sickness as well as success. Audubon’s biography is one worth discovering, beginning with Wiki’s survey. Practicing Social Distancing makes for more time, right? Check out  American Masters on Audubon; it’s time well-spent.

But Audubon’s work isn’t something I can reproduce.

No, I need the basics!

Because his lines and colors are unfussy, like Matisse’s, I tried my hand copying Charley Harper’s rendition of our state bird. I call it the Early Bird . . .

What I’ve learned from Matisse and now Harper – albeit third or fourth hand – shows me that real artists master paint and canvas with a breathtaking deftness.

Taking a deep breath, and enjoying all kinds of inspirations, I won’t hold my breath for calm and common sense to bloom. These are unsettling days.

But, so far, the shortened leash of social distancing isn’t chaffing.  God, help me look beyond what can unsettle me, and see your hand of friendship, care, and rule, trusting your tether.

A near-hit bolt of lightning can create a lot more Christian thinking than a long-winded sermon.~Duane Dewell

I am glad for the freedom – and the wherewithal to enjoy in relative safety to just  Look Around and See What You Can See!

How are you doing, gentle reader? What are you doing and making in this time of social distancing? You might like this link, too:  A Reminder from Jim Denison

Hey! The daffodils are open; they may be my next project!

“She turned to the sunlight
    And shook her yellow head,
And whispered to her neighbor:
    “Winter is dead.” 
― A.A. Milne, When We Were Very Young











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