Posts Tagged ‘Wisconsin Autumn’

Red Cabin in Winter

Our Wisconsin Summer lasted far longer than usual this year, and then after a week of welcome rain we had more Summer, a quick frost, and now the most gorgeous Indian Summer.  The leaves are finally turning—weeks beyond the norm for us, in fact many have blown down without turning.  What a poignant, breathtaking time of year.

Yet we know the “inevitable” is literally around the corner.  I confess that I no longer welcome winter like I did as a child.  Okay, the first snowfall sends me reeling with delight—and I’ll be out with my camera when that happens.  And the second, and the third—hopefully through Christmas.

I don’t even mind the January cold that much, although it’s no fun to be out and about at minus 10 degrees.  Wool is my good friend, after years of raising sheep, knitting, weaving, and spinning—and continuing to spin and knit in the present tense.

Yes, wool!  But a heartfelt “NO” to the weeks of darkness before and after the winter solstice.  Around solstice time, I print out the length of day charts for January, February, and March—and consult the stats almost daily until early March when that sudden surge of light turns into abject exuberance.  Then I recycle the chart papers for another year when I plan to print out more.

This year I’m getting ready for the inevitable with winter paintings.  Several other local artists and I supply a bank, a family restaurant, a chiropractic clinic, and a hospice with paintings which we change every three months around the year.  Last December the person in charge of coordinating the displays called me and requested some winter art.  I protested that “I don’t do winter because winter is simply not my favorite season”—but my resistance failed and, on very short notice, I produced some winter art—specifically the below rendering titled “Up North”.

Up North 4

“Up North” turned out to be one of my favorites, maybe because I love the vicinity of Wisconsin Up North with a passion.  I also managed some wintery mountain scenes for the remaining local gallery sites—but they are not my favorites.

Now certainly one could rotate paintings from site to site.  It’s fairly unlikely that someone visiting a hospice in Oconomowoc would also be sitting in a bank boardroom in Waukesha—at least in the same time period.  Unlikely, but not impossible.

Maybe a bit of repetition would be helpful.  But no, I’m insisting on fresh exposure everywhere in every season.  I love the motivation, the actual work involved, and knowing that each piece will have a singular viewing.  Inventory is building and I have a lot of framed paintings on hand for anyone who may want to tour my home studio.

So unless we get snow tonight, this year’s winter art will be ready for the first snow.  The watercolor/gouache painting at the top of this entry is a sample.  It’s name is “Red Cabin in Winter”.  I guess part of me will always be “Up North”.

Read Full Post »