Tag Archive | painting

castle in the sky

castle s

our bridges reflect themselves,
shimmering as we cross
between the solid and what
we cannot control–
the light tells us stories

about what we think we see,
about what lies beneath
the surface of where and who
we think we are–
more, there is always more

that stays unfocused,
that contains what can’t be
seen it its entirety,
that reconfigures itself
with wind, or clouds,

or tides rising from the unseen–
they say humans prefer the mirrored
image to the camera’s eye

the uncapturable moment
of possibility

For Sue Vincent’s photo prompt, above.

castle close up a

 

Draw a Bird Day: Rainbow Songbird

nina draw a bird aug 8

Nina’s internet has been out since the tropical storm, with no promises of when it will be back, so she took a photo on her phone of her bird and sent it to me to post.  Another colorful tribute to Draw a Bird Day!

And hopefully her internet will be back soon so she can post more of what she’s been doing.

butterfly

butterfly s

sun casts its
eye on winged shadows,
dancing in
to the day–
tossed by light waves that play with
dappled melodies

butterfly close up s

I’ve been wanting to do another butterfly painting, and the dVerse prompt from Laura, flights of fancy, provided the perfect excuse.

more birds

after adrian s

The morning wakes without rain,
a shimmer of green
appearing from the silhouettes
of the trees scattered between
buildings.  Silence floats
off the glossy reflections
of the windows
holding the rising sun.

I look for Crow flashing
black feathers as he calls
from somewhere I can’t see.
His voice bounces off
the brick and I imagine
he raises his sharp beak,
laughing as he follows
my eyes searching  for the sound.

I have not asked him to speak–
he does not wait for invitations—
I do not for an instant believe
he is without purpose here
on this clear morning calling me
as usual to attention.  Do you
pretend you know me?

he asks, and what can I reply?

How can you ever pretend
to know another when
you cannot even see who
this person is that you carry
with you all the time?
Who is this being that you call
yourself?  What
is their true name?

Another piece of art inspired by Nina–her joyful birds, above.  For the poem, I used a prompt posted awhile ago by Miz Quickly, in which you take lines from a poem and write them every few lines on a piece of paper and fill in the spaces between with your own words.

after adrian close up s

As Jane told me recently, it’s hard to find a poem of mine that doesn’t talk about birds.  I used lines from an Adrian C. Louis poem “Magpie in Margaritaville”, which I found in the wonderful Tupelo Press book “Native Voices”.  I couldn’t find a link to the poem online, but you can read about the poet, a member of the Paiute Tribe, here.

Also linking to earthweal, open link weekend.

Draw a Bird Day: Mallard

collage mallard a

we decoy ducks–turn
them into sitting targets
for the play of guns,

cartoon them with characters
that ignore their balanced grace

mallard f watercolor s

I did a lot of drawings and paintings of ducks and found them to be a challenge.  Often they ended up looking more like decoys than something alive.  I was interested to discover that the expression “sitting duck” came from how easy ducks are for hunters to shoot and kill–less sport than slaughter.

2 mallards s

I also did not know that they spend 2 weeks in late summer or early fall molting, replacing all of their feathers.  During that time they can’t fly.

 

ducklings drawing s

Mallards are good parents, and prefer shallow freshwater wetlands to raise their families.  They are one of the most recognizable and abundant duck species in the world, and ancestor to most strains of domesticated ducks.

For Colleen’s #tanka Tuesday, poet’s choice.  I’ve written a tanka.

wings

wings wet s

wings magnetic s

Inspired by Nina’s butterfly rock, above, a collaboration with the Oracle.

wings wet close up s

spirit wanderer
life must shine beneath
this summer moon

breathe bright breezes
through flowering light

walk on air

let the nightsong
follow you home

almost full moon july 2020 s

Last night the rain kept me from seeing the moon, but I did capture it the night before.

 

curvilinear

curvilinear close up s

curvilinear magnetic

curvilinear s

The Oracle was simple and direct today.  Humans aren’t in the picture at all.

brown
earth seeds
listen to winter

roots
grow between
rain and sun

ancient
light tendrils
green through birdsong

full
into bee
deep summer air

Nina and I used to collaborate with the Oracle on a semi-regular basis.  I’m hoping we will do so again soon.

Crested Caracara (draw a bird day)

crested caracara combo s

appearances tell
stories, actions shout, defy
classification

I bought a bird book at a library sale intending to use the photos for collage.  Looking through, I was drawn to the same bird in two different sections of the book: the crested caracara.  The Cornell Bird Lab says it “looks like a hawk, behaves like a vulture, and is technically a falcon”.  Hence my senryu, for Colleen’s weekly challenge with poet’s choice of words.  Apply to humans as needed.

 

crested caracara wax paper s

Crested Caracaras live from the Southern United States down through Central and South America.  They are also known as the Mexican eagle, and are the subject of folklore throughout the region.  The only falcon that collects material to build a nest, caracaras are carnivorous scavengers, who will also hunt for small prey by running on or digging in the ground if necessary.

crested caracara 2s

I painted my image first on wax paper using acrylic, intending to do a monoprint, which did not work–the paint was not dense or thick enough.  I then painted it on rice paper, also using acrylic.  This made the paper shrink in places, but worked better than I expected.  I photographed both images, then superimposed the wax paper over the rice paper–strangely they fit together well, considering I did no pencil drawing for either, but just painted each.

Once again, Draw a Bird Day, the 8th of each month, is serving as a placeholder here at MeMadTwo while Nina takes an extended break. I’m hoping she’ll be back in soon.  In the meantime, you can find me (Kerfe) at https://kblog.blog/.

crested caracara close up s

Draw-a-Bird Day: Pileated Woodpecker

pileated woodpecker s

Can you hear it? Earth’s
heartbeat chants in rhythm with
the drumming of birds.

I’ve been meaning to draw a woodpecker for awhile.  I painted this without a sketch, so the proportions are a little off, but I think it captures the essence–the colors and the crest and long beak.  I also put white on white lines for trees in the background.  Pileated Woodpeckers prefer to live in old growth forests, nesting in dead trees, and their numbers declined as forests were cleared in the 19th century.  But their numbers seem to be increasing again, as they adapt to new environments.

At my last residence I would see and hear red-headed woodpeckers. I haven’t seen any here, but on many weekends the African drummers are in residence at the historic mansion around the corner.  Both man and bird connecting to earth’s rhythms.

Once again, Draw a Bird Day, the 8th of each month, is serving as a placeholder here at MeMadTwo while Nina takes an extended break.  Come back soon Nina, and bring some birds!

In the meantime, you can find me (Kerfe) at https://kblog.blog/.

Draw a Bird Day: Grackle

grackle photo s

Every beach vacation comes with its own bird. One year it was mockingbirds, one year a very vocal cardinal.  One year, crows.

This year we were accompanied by grackles. They would sit on the railing of the beach house speaking in their rusty tongue, lined up like soldiers. If one turned, all turned.  Once they saw someone was paying attention they would vocalize a bit more and suddenly disappear.

On the beach they appeared ahead of my walking path and waited for me, foraging in the waves. As soon as I caught up, they flew off ahead again.

Although it’s natural to see their iridescent strutting as a variation on crows, grackles are actually part of the lark family, related also to blackbirds and orioles.

But they do have a connection to crows—all back birds are said to know magic, to live on the borders of the possible unknown.

standing on the edge
between water and shoreline,
feathers glittering,

you pause, watch me watching you–
our eyes meet through layered light

grackle close up s

For Colleen’s #TankaTuesday, poet’s choice of words, a haibun.

Draw-a-Bird Day is placeholding here at method two madness each month until Nina returns.  You can find me at https://kblog.blog/ in the meantime.

I’ve also linked to dVerse Open Link night.