Favorite Live Oak Trees
acrylic on stretched canvas
Notes From My Residency Journal
After two weeks away, it was sheer pleasure to return to Fair Oaks today. I ordered some boots for my residency journeys and they arrived just in time to break them in today. They are steel toed and water proof so I feel better prepared to avoid a potential snake bite when I stomp around in the wild places. They have pink stitched flowers on them to give them a bit of girly, which I like.
Henry and I set out and arrived around 10:30 to greet Rick and his staff. We drove around quite awhile, thinking about where we wanted to paint and finally settled on the path around the pond. It was a perfect spot with a bit of shade and a beautiful view. I bought myself a new paint box because my old one was damaged in the New Smyrna trip by Sandy. This new one holds larger canvases so I have been enjoying working on some 12x16 paintings on location.
Before I knew it the lunch bell rang and I enjoyed homemade Chili Dogs made by Scotty, the manager of the estate. I so enjoy being around the young college kids. They are lively and fun with great adventures to share. They are all so smart and capable too, just like my own daughters.
Around 2 PM, I finished up work on the painting and we loaded the gear in Leroy, my old truck. We jumped back in the golf cart and headed out to explore the fields and lovely Fish Prairie. I am so fond of the prairie and it is starting to look just about right for painting. I am trying to talk the staff into doing a mow on the paths through the prairie for me so I can get back there easily to paint soon. I got a couple of great images today for studio work. Talk about a gorgeous place!!
I can never get enough of Fair Oaks.It speaks to me deeply, on many levels. The light there is like no other place I've ever painted. As I drive along in my trusty blue golf cart, I see tiny magical surprises, in the fields, on the trails and in the trees, particularly in the fall and winter. Today I saw tiny red leaves hiding inside the trees from the vines growing in the canopies. They go unnoticed in the summer but pop out now in the cool time of the year. I saw tiny yellow daisies out on the prairie, peeking through the leaves on the paths. Around a corner, a tree on fire with orange and red with a back drop of deep blue gray and green; these are the small and delicate gifts given to me as I explore. Mother nature has given Fair Oaks very special qualities.
How lucky I am to be there.