A couple of days ago, I went outside and found a handful of things I could paint little pictures of. As it is mid-July, there was a lot of plant life involved. At first, my plan was to paint some still-lifes. Why? Because it’s really fun. But as I went along, my plans evolved. Here is what happened:
The interesting objects in the foreground are the fruits of the hop hornbeam tree. They are so beautiful, and at first I wasn’t sure why they looked Japanese to me. Then I remembered a book of Japanese crafts from the library, which shows you how to make a silk pouch that looks a lot like these fruits. The book, by Kumiko Sudo, is called Omiyage, which means, “the giving of gifts.” The pouch in the book is actually called a “pine-cone pouch,” though the tree is called a hop hornbeam because the fruit looks like hops. So I guess there are similarities between hops and pinecones, too.
While I was painting the hop hornbeam fruits, I decided to throw in a rose-breasted grosbeak, for color. We saw one just the other day. So gorgeous.
Then, who knows why, I decided to throw in someone relaxing on a chaise lounge. All summery things. Everyone is momentarily still, so I called it “Very Still Life.”
Then I just couldn’t resist painting some raspberries. They’re all over the place. So delicious. If I had to forage for my existence, I would never survive, unless it was a day in mid-July when the raspberries are ripe.
I call this one “Self-portrait with Raspberries.” It was the only way I could paint it, as I have never seen a bush of raspberries that my hand was not reaching into.
I didn’t paint the radicchio or the wild peas. Or the very cool spindle of orange and white striped string I had just bought. Time to get back to my longer term projects. But it was a fruitful interlude. (ha!)