Today was a day of many visitors. The most welcomed one might be LJ, my painting “coach”. We discussed the detail around Sawtooth, so I decided to drive there. (How many of you can say you have driven to Sawtooth??) With her help, I greatly improved the area from Empire to Mineral Peak, sorting out the rocks and ridges, adding shadows, erasing lines that don’t belong, and this is how it looks now: See how it was back in February??
Today was fun – lots of detailing, and a few hidden items, which will stay hidden for awhile! There may be a contest. There may be a prize. More will be revealed, both literally and figuratively! Meanwhile, big THANK YOU to Carmen and Caitlyn who picked up trash by the mural today. Caitlyn is 6 and it was her idea. I was thrilled, because trash and weeds were on my list of things to do before the Garden Party on Sunday!This is Shane, a friend I have made while painting. He appears to be taking my advice seriously that the faster one runs, the better the mural looks!
Today I moved the truck out of the way and finished the mural. Maybe. Maybe not. There is paint on the entire wall now, and as the weather allows, I will fix this, improve that, clean up these, add those. More texture, better edges on rocks, fix fix fix. Here, look at the end:Now the fun begins – all the fine tuning and hiding the objects! People have been asking me about that since I started on February 4, and it will happen!
Good thing it isn’t really hot yet, because it IS really REALLY hot working on THE WALL. Phew. This morning I may have finished the “hill” – I hope it gives the viewer a sense of placement, a feeling of being grounded instead of just viewing mountains from a helicopter. And today I was asked again about the “postcards” as in “Are you going to just leave those insets there?” I used extraordinary restraint in my response because dozens of rude remarks flashed through my mind such as “How did you pass your driver’s test?” or “You got any spray paint with you?” or “Why don’t you just try to peel them off?” or “yeah, I spent too much on them at Kinko’s” or “Bite me”. Not sure what I said, but I hope it was polite. I don’t usually feel polite when it is really hot out. The names are mostly gone with one exception:
Since THE WALL, other subjects have taken a back seat. While I await the abatement of this little heat wave, the subject of bridges has re-emerged. On my way to THE WALL one morning, I detoured a bit to enjoy spring in the countryside around Exeter and discovered another bridge. I’ve crossed it many times, but only approached it from the east a few times so hadn’t noticed its graceful lines. Perhaps there are more than just the 3 beautiful bridges in Tulare County! (and did I ever say Congratulations, Stan Coffelt, for successfully naming all three!???) Here is bridge #4:This crosses the St. Johns River on the south side of Venice Hill. It isn’t as dramatic as the other 3, but it definitely has style.
It is relatively hot out today which causes the paint to dry much too fast in the palette, on the wall and in the brush. The only reason I tried to paint is that Steve Fujimoto, renowned Visalia Times-Delta photographer, came to “shoot” me in action. These photos are to accompany an article that will appear in the May issue of Tulare County Life magazine. That will take place the first Tuesday in May with the day’s copy of the Times-Delta. For those of you out of the area, perhaps you can find it here: http://www.visaliatimesdelta.com/ So today I just added some texture to Ashley’s hill and began encroaching on the list of names. When the weather cools back down, I’ll go finish this area.
I am an idiot. I sent you all to Amazon.com for Ron Hughart’s book when what I really meant to say is that you should go to The Book Garden in Exeter! This is a wonderful little independent bookstore that stocks all sorts of books, including a fine collection of books of local interest. Mea culpa, please forgive me, Cousin Chris. Ron Hughart’s book is “A Place Beyond The Dust Bowl”. Buy it, read it, love it! Buy it from The Book Garden in Exeter.
Here is the flyer for the Garden Party again, hopefully readable on your monitor. Unfortunately the only way I could figure out how to resize it to fit on the screen is a method that includes the toolbar at the top!
Wow, can it be?? Today I began detailing that hill on the lower left because the final “snapshot” is finished. Maybe. (A man asked me again how I got those photos up on the wall – his buddy blurted out “With her paintbrush, Dummy” or something equally ungracious.)Does this look like dirt, rocks, growies and sticks?Here is a look at the last (sob, sniffle) “snapshot”. It might need a little more tightening up. And here is one that I have straightened for you:See the ruffled edge? It surprised me how random those edges were in the snapshots from the 40s, although I am sure there had to be some that had symmetrical ruffles.