Where have you been

Monday, September 29, 2008

Summer's End

We actually are in Fall! I forgot to mark the day. 

It is hot, humid and sultry, due to hurricane remnants. The grass finally greened up again after the summer drought.

I did this square painting for EBSQ's Flower-of-the-Month Show (this month; Queen Anne's Lace.)

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Tea in Gion

The Big Dude just found some of my lost photos from 2000 from my stay in Asia. 

I had gone to Japan for an entire month on one trip, in order to do some training. One side trip from Tokyo was to Kyoto--yes, to Gion, the home of the geisha and this was after "Memoirs of a Geisha" was published. So that was exciting! 

We stayed at a ryokan, the traditional inn, and one day, wandering around Gion, we saw a tan plaster statue of a kimono-clad woman posed in the doorway of a teahouse. The statue was beautiful--the color a uniform tan, like tea-stained marble. We gazed at the statue for quite a while. Then, it moved and smiled at us! It was NO statue, this was a teahouse hostess, simply gazing out the doorway in some kind of meditative repose. She was dressed in a plain, light brown silk kimono, but how incredibly elegant.

Naturally, we had to have tea there!  I ordered matcha, which I had never had before (despite my Japanese teacher being a tea ceremony master, shame on me.) But I knew I would like it even before the first, bitter, fragrant sip of the green foam.

This is what came on my plate: a bowl of matcha and a sweet, a "wagashi" made of agar-agar (kanten) and sweetened, colored white bean paste. It was in the shape of a tiny fishbowl! I hated to destroy it by eating it, but it was delicious, a pure sugar sweet that set off the bitter aromatic tones of the matcha. A moment to celebrate every sense, including the aesthetic.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

This is the final version of "Rose Satin Blouse"--a painting of a Northern Pueblo woman done from a photo by my late father. Watercolor on paper.

Works in Progress

I'm starting a series of watercolors based on photographs my late father did of local native Americans in Santa Fe, New Mexico. 

I paint watercolors, not nearly spending enough time doing them because I have a busy career doing other things in life. 

The first picture is the nearly finished portrait, the other is the starting wash after sketching.