Sunday, May 20, 2012
Cabin Magic, 8x10
A high powered rifle shot woke me. It was 4:20 am and I had been asleep, parked in my van a hundred yards off an old mountain road and under a tree where I felt fairly hidden. Slowly I raised my head just above the bottom of the window and peered through the morning fog and gloom. Nothing moved. This definitely didn't seem right.
I watched the road through the trees for several minutes when a man finally came into view carrying a rifle. He slowly sauntered down the road not seeing me, I hoped. Quietly I threw on some pants, collected my things, lowered the camper top, started the engine and drove off. Getting to the main road without seeing the poacher, I felt much better.
It was the beginning of a magical day several years ago when I had decided to paint my way across northern Washington and end up at our cabin in Montana. Coming down out of the mountains the Pend O'reille river wove its way south. The rising sun lit it's surface and backlit the eastern mountains so I stopped and painted it, finishing about 6:30 am. and drove on.
I did three paintings that day and this little study is the only one that I decided not to sell....the others sold quickly. Every painting fell off the brush without effort. This rock is just outside our cabin and was lit by the setting sun at the other end of the day. It is loosely painted with little attention to fine detail yet there is something about it that contains many of the things I find satisfying. Varied brush strokes, interesting color, thin and thick paint, transparency of color and a feeling of movement and energy. The paint, in and of itself, is compelling.
I puzzle how some days, in many areas of our lives, can just be effortless with everything falling into place....and others the exact opposite. How does that happen? What do I need to do to make it happen more often?
Maybe there should be an awakening gunshot every morning....