Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Last of 2014

Fir, Moleskine sketchpad 3.5: x 5.5"
I admire the evergreens I see everywhere in western New York, especially with the snow decorating their branches. This one seemed almost like a sculpture standing atop a pedestal, posed to paint.

I actually used two different photos for this one, grabbing the line of background trees from a shot that was exceptionally boring. I keep such photos for just such a use. Let me show you.

Not exactly inspiring, is it? But I bet I'll use some of the various parts of it in several different drawings. I always start with what will stand behind the subject. After all, you have to draw what's behind first! I don't detail it much, but I get shapes and values in place to some degree. 

And this is the snowy fir tree in the original photo. I shot it for the big tree with the snow between the two trunks. Again, not what I'd call a compelling photo, but there's actually a lot there to work with. I bet I'll use the icy driveway in sunlight/shadows in a piece at some point in time, not to mention the other, taller pine, and perhaps the tall tree, as well. 

Presumably this will be the last drawing for this year, unless I get inspired to do another one today. You never know. We're under a snow warning and I'm snuggled down in my chair, tea at hand, a fuzzy blanket over my lap, enjoying the companionable peace and quiet. 

I'm looking forward to what 2015 might bring, as I mull over in my mind the many blessings and challenges I've had in 2014. Sometimes the difficulties bear the greatest blessings, but it takes time and distance to perceive that. In 2014, my husband and I moved to three different locations, shedding layers of possessions each time, finally transplanting from Albuquerque, NM to Amherst, NY with a ten-foot trailer full of our things. We left behind our family and friends, our church family, the ministry we were doing at The Albuquerque Rescue Mission, our jobs, our car (long story), and many, if not most of our possessions and furnishings. May I just say it wasn't easy. But hard things to do aren't necessarily bad things. They're just difficult.

We loved living in New Mexico, calling it home for 35 years, but now the Lord has moved us on to something new. We're taking care of my mother-in-law, who needs a bit more help as her health has worsened. She has relocated to a new apartment we all share. The Lord Jesus has given us grace and peace here, as we settle in to see what comes next.

We've found ourselves reaching out with the gospel to a lot of our new neighbors, all Chinese nationals living here as they attend grad school at the University of Buffalo. The new year may be very interesting.

Meanwhile, I'm enjoying little drawings and contemplating some paintings I may do in the coming year. I wish you a creative, inspiring, and refreshing New Year!

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