The Leaves are on the ground in Eastern Pennsylvania as we begin to turn our thoughts to Winter and our interiors.
To Autumn by William Blake
O Autumn, laden with fruit, and stain'd
With the blood of the grape, pass not, but sit
Beneath my shady roof; there thou may'st rest,
And tune thy jolly voice to my fresh pipe,
And all the daughters of the year shall dance!
Sing now the lusty song of fruits and flowers.
'The narrow bud opens her beauties to
The sun, and love runs in her thrilling veins;
Blossoms hang round the brows of Morning, and
Flourish down the bright cheek of modest Eve,
Till clust'ring Summer breaks forth into singing,
And feather'd clouds strew flowers round her head.
'The spirits of the air live in the smells
Of fruit; and Joy, with pinions light, roves round
The gardens, or sits singing in the trees.'
Thus sang the jolly Autumn as he sat,
Then rose, girded himself, and o'er the bleak
Hills fled from our sight; but left his golden load.
Inspired by a trip to the New York Botanical Gardens Orchid show, and Julie's amazing photos, I began drawing orchids on pieces of Birch bark that I'd peeled off trees a few weeks ago. An unlikely medium, though bark after all is a cousin to processed paper and provides a natural texture that makes every drawing look good.
This variety of Orchid is called a Slipper Orchid for it's distinctive pouch that resembles a slipper.
As is the nature of topical work, often assignments for the same subject flood in at once. Here are three different quickie illos on the same theme. Apologies to all the inhabitants of Drawgerland for my MIA. Good to be back.
Along with my son, Dylan, and his girlfriend, Sam, we traversed four state lines to spend the Fourth of July with Randy & Leann Enos at their home/studio/horse farm in Connecticut.
Here, Randy is proudly displaying the catch of the day. It's not uncommon for Randy to follow a horse, bucket outstretched , as it relieves itself... in an effort to catch poop midair before it spoils the immaculately kept arena. Meanwhile, Dylan & Sam get acquainted with various parts of a horse's anatomy.
After a few quick lessons by consummate riding instructor, Leann, Sam was galloping off on her own.
All creatures great and small, are welcomed at the Enos ranch.
Randy & Bri (Musey) strut arm & arm to the house to prepare a sumptuous lunch, followed by a visit to Randy's subteranean studio. The walls are a visual feast and everywhere there is evidence of the rich life Randy lives through his art, family, friends, various collections and momentos from his long, successful career.
THE BLOCK WALL: The wall leading to the studio is lined with Randy's lino blocks. Many of these are discarded and never make to the wall, which i suggested to Randy ...might be considered a crime by most of us. I managed to wrestle this gorgeous original block from Randy, somewhere in between the flat file and the trash bin. I am mesmerized by the mandala like quality of it.
After frolicking on the Westport beach for awhile, we enjoyed each other's conversation over dinner at a local Enos haunt. There is no fireworks display that can compare with the colorful, charismatic, gracious qualities of Randy and Leann Enos.
There's been little time to blog lately because the backdrop time of year has rolled around again. My daughter is the lead in this year's high school production of "Thoroughly Modern Millie". So i get to do the scenery. This year, I followed the ideas & drawings of my friend (and muralist) James Gloria. Together with a third friend, we finished and hung the first of a series of curtains and props. Sorry...gotta go. There's another 48 foot curtain to paint tonight.
Painting on the floor presents a number of challenges. We held our breath when the curtain was hung for fear that the perspective was skewed.
Every Christmas Eve, we host a dinner for friends and family. I create place settings with a theme. These are always cut-outs with everyone in attendance photoshoped into the image. This year, the theme is "The Gothard Circus". I used a 1920's Diixie Cup Circus propmotional set that we picked up years ago, for the basis of the circus. It's a 30 piece set with extraordinary illustrations (artist unknown). Here are the results. Of course, I am the ringleader.
My son, Dylan, always ends up lookin good.
Daughter, Anna, riding some duck - ostrich hybrid.