Saturday, November 16, 2019

Blueberry Leaves Turn Red

The blueberry leaves are turning bright red, just outside my back door.  Today I remembered to take a picture, before they are gone.  I also created a version of this photo with a Prisma filter, and I plan to post it tomorrow.

Friday, November 15, 2019

House on Signal Mountain (as of Nov. 15, 2019)

This is the painting I have been working on, a house portrait based on a photo.  (The reference photo is posted here on September 16th.)  Today I fixed a shadow that has been puzzling me (on the right-hand side of the painting).  And I added some shadows to the trees behind the house.  By the time I was finished working on this, it was 4:30.  The color looks a little different today: I didn't want to take a picture under a light bulb, so I photographed the painting outside.  I am hoping to finish this painting soon.  There are some things I need to fix, but it won't be long now.  

Thursday, November 14, 2019

House on Signal Mountain (as of Nov. 14, 2019)

This morning I continued work on this painting, a "house portrait" that I am painting from a photograph. (You can see my reference photo posted here September 16.)  Today I worked on the trees in the background, behind the house.  I added a touch of green foliage, which works because the photo that I am using was taken in late March.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Through a Window in Boston (with Prisma filter)

This image started with a picture that I took while I was at Galatea Gallery, looking out the window at Boston's SOWA neighborhood.  I added the Prisma filter and cropped the original image to get this composition.

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

House on Signal Mountain (As of Nov. 12, 2019)

This morning I worked on this painting, a "house portrait" based on a photograph. (My reference photo is posted here, September 16.) Today I worked on the tree trunk, lightening the shadows and adding highlights.  I also added some yellow highlights to the front of the house. Then I repainted the sky, trying to make the color more even before I paint in the tree branches. Getting there. . .

Monday, November 11, 2019

Dad in Florida (A Soldier's Love Letter)

It's Veteran's Day so I was looking for a World War II photo of my father.  He was from Brooklyn, but after enlisting, was briefly stationed in Pueblo, Colorado, where he met and married my mother, a few months before he would go to Europe. I usually look for war-time photos in the album mom kept,  beginning with their courtship and marriage in Pueblo,  including photos that he sent back from overseas.  But today I also looked in the boxes of my dad's photos that my cousin Rori sent me last year, photos that he had kept with him for years.  I was really looking for photos of Europe today, so nearly really passed this one over. I had seen it before, and from other photos in my mom's album, had concluded that my father must have been stationed in Florida right leaving for Europe.  Before casting this photo aside, I turned it over to see if it was dated, and to my surprise, on the back found a love letter to my mother, written in Spanish. 
     My father studied Spanish in school, and he loved it. (When I was a child, he later would read me articles in the Spanish Reader's Digest, and became the go-to person for Spanish-speaking customers in our family furniture store in Pueblo.) Did my mother know Spanish? No, maybe a bit of French. But I am sure that she loved the fact that he spoke Spanish. But I know she loved my father enough to find a way to figure it out.
     Well, I fell in love with this letter, so I am posting this.  This wasn't at all what I was looking for today, and I was thinking it might not be the best choice for Veteran's Day.  But courage in war is about putting what you love on the line.  My father found love shortly before leaving to do his bit against the Nazis in World War II was ironic, potentially tragic,  and somehow raised the stakes for loss. My parents didn't know the future, and the fact that my father he found love on the road to war made his path all the more courageous, if you ask me.  
     People live on in what they pass along, how they are remembered.  My father passed on his love of music, his love of languages, and most important, his kindness and openhearted nature.  And his courage in the face of tyranny, an example I think about more and more.  His memory is always a blessing for me, as was his life.
    So here is the text of his letter in Spanish and in English (my translation):  
"To Ruth
      Para que tu puedes recordarme. He buscado las palabras para escrtir qui, pero sin exito. Tu tienes un corazon de oro, y nuestros mentes viajar par il mismo camino, que nunca estoy tan feliz como cuando estoy contigo, y el salido de tu compania es con mas dolor que perder el diente Esta no basta. Tu sabes lo que quiero decir.

"To Ruth
    So you can remember me.  I have searched for the words to write, but without success. You have a heart of gold and our minds travel the same way, that I am never so happy as when I am with you, and leaving your company is more painful than having a tooth pulled.  This is not enough.  You know what I want to say.

Sunday, November 10, 2019

House on Signal Mountain (as of Nov. 10, 2019)

Today I worked some more on this "house portrait," painting from a photo.  (My reference photo is posted here September 16.) I started by making some corrections to the structures of the house, moving things around just a bit. I think everything is in final position now, thought I need to clean up some lines and edges. Then I added cast shadows to the tree trunk in front of the house. The shadows look a bit extreme at the moment, but I am going to blend them in.  To be continued. . . .