Afternoon in the Churchyard / 10x10
My trip is drawing to a close as I near my friend's home in State College, PA. Different emotions pull at me, as they always do when a painting trip winds down.
I am tired, tired in my bones, tired in my hands, tired in my eyes, tired in my soul.
I am delighted, thrilled with my paintings, and with the leaps and strides my painting has taken.
I'm empty, drained of ideas, of energy, of the deep drive to keep traveling, keep seeking, keep painting. It's time.
And I'm full, full of color, full of light, full of gratitude for the beauty of the natural world and the incredible opportunity I've had to glide through this fiery landscape and paint.
So it is with this mix of feelings that I get off the highway and pull into this churchyard in Lamar, PA. It seems fitting that I paint a church, say a little prayer of thanks, and of hope for safe travels home, and success with my very last paintings of the trip.
The Black Dirt Region
On my way from Vermont to Pennsylvania, I stopped at the home of some friends in Warwick, NY, and had a delightful evening of ideas and laughter and catching up, and in the morning, before heading out to Pennsylvania, I drove through the Black Dirt area.
The first time I saw this place, I thought farmers had burned the fields, as they did sometimes in Idaho, where we once lived.
But no, it was just the color of the incredibly rich soil, which at one point was a glacial lakebed.
It is a fascinating and incredibly beautiful place - and I do wonder why I didn't stay there for one extra day and paint. But I have a multitude of photographs, and can always paint from them. After all, taking those pictures is a big part of these trips.
Dog of the Day
I saw this moose of a dog in Kittery, Maine, where I stopped to get postcards on my way out of the state. It was a very windy day, and his hair was blowing wildly. I think he liked the wind.
A Final Thought
"Anyone who thinks fallen leaves are dead
has never watched them dancing on a windy day. "
- Shira Tamir