Saturday, February 29, 2020


                                  Untitled watermedia on panel 12x12 inches, 30.5x30.5 cm

 About a month ago my husband, who is a nurse, told me a doctor had said he was scared to death of the coronavirus. Ever since I`ve followed this closely. Everybody is, right? With China locking down millions of its citizens to contain the disease, and the stock market in free fall, it is reasonable to think this is a big deal. Not the press and democrats out to get Trump.
 Last night the first case of an Oregonian with the virus was announced after the state`s lab confirmed it. He first showed symptoms on the 19th. He is also an employee at a school in my community, luckily without much contact with students. It is unknown how he acquired the virus. This suggests it is spreading somehow undetected. But maybe slowly, with luck.
 I feel like I`m an unwilling participant of someone`s science project. Waiting to be observed. My guess is this sensation is common to everyone right now. We are waiting for a potential catastrophe. Hmmm, I`ve never been a patient person and the suspense scares me more than the illness. The imagination can be so dangerous. I can`t stand horror movies and I`m incredulous of those that do.
 So if that unfortunate and local man appears to be just the first in a circle, will my city be quarantined? If we can contain it here, that would be amazing. I probably have two weeks of food on hand. But if it becomes a pandemic with lots of sick people, what do we do? How do we help?
 As of tonight, there are 70 confirmed cases in the US, 44 came off the cruise ship. It seems given the incubation time, we will know a whole lot more a week from now

                     The Season is Over oil and acrylic on canvas 20x20 inches, 51x51 cm

 I always photograph what I`ve done before going upstairs to sleep. With my phone, just to figure out what I`m doing. A while back I did this;

as an underpainting for something that then failed, but I didn`t delete the photo. Something about the palette I thought was worth returning to sometime.  It is the basis of 'The Season is Over'.
I`ve several ideas that would be best explored in oil paint but I have the usual odd reluctance. When I stopped last August, I wondered if it was for good. I keep trying to find equivalent techniques with acrylics, but unless I use them transparently, I`m disappointed. Oil paint is the only kind that doesn`t talk back. What I paint stays like I painted it. No surprises when it dries, predictable opacity, a pleasure to move around with a brush and the color is superior. When I return to it, I`m usually exhausted by watermedia with its quirks and want some control again.

                                 Night Cloud watermedia on paper 12x9 inches, 30.5x23 cm

 As I wait for Covid-19 to change everything, I`m in full scale procrastination avoiding learning web design and launching my new website. Before taxes, I promise myself.

                                         Incoming watermedia on paper 19x14 inches, 48x36 cm

 More tinkering. I`m concluding lots of work that got abandoned too. I can spend a whole day trying to rescue something once again and in the end, I get out my giant scissors and cut it up. I tried.
Yesterday I did an experimental plein air session to find out if the temperature was tolerable yet. Nope my hands were freezing. Soon though I think.

                                                             by Fred Cumming

 Fred Cumming turned 90 last week! Someone posted this masterpiece on Instagram in celebration. I hope he`s recognized as a British national treasure in his homeland.

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Sunday, February 9, 2020

Darkness and Light

                          Rainforest Equinox 2 watermedia on Yupo 19x14 inches, 48x36 cm

 Ok then, the Senate has spoken. I feel better now. The citizens of this country were either paying attention or they weren`t. If extorting a country at war on behalf of your own reelection isn`t impeachable, what is? The view of a political party utterly exposed in its cowardice and corruption was breathtaking. Now we know beyond any doubt, Trump is not the cause of this collapse, he is the result. Everyone can see it. Are there enough people who care? Time will tell.
A new political scientist has a theory of modern elections that makes sense. Turnout is everything and what drives turnout is fear and loathing. Democrats could not be more motivated to get Trump out, and thus will prevail. She was one of the few who predicted correctly the huge gains in the 2018 midterms.

 The light is stronger and the day lengthens with each new sunrise. I`m finally feeling like myself.
 The impeachment gave me clarity and closure oddly enough. And for what it`s worth, this democratic socialist believes what Amy Klobuchar says. She can beat him.

                                                        cartoon by Kevin Siers

I`ve been painting but not so sure of the quality. Nonetheless I know from experience, that nothing good or bad will happen without a brush in my hand. Working heals. To make things is to be sane.

                      At the Edge of the Meadow watermedia on paper 19x14 inches, 48x36 cm

                                La Serenisima watermedia on paper 12x9 inches, 30.5x23 cm

 The always graceful Tualatin River beneath those trees.

                               Christmas Morning watermedia on paper 19x14 inches, 48x36 cm

                                                             by Peter Archer

                                                              by Peter Archer

                                                                   by Peter Archer

 I`ve been enjoying Peter Archer`s bleak vision lately. Like a sad love song, it hurts in the best way. Austere and brooding though they are, a small hopeful quality is also present. Beauty can survive the darkest situation.

                                                                 Where`s Carter?

                                                                    Fred Stonehouse

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