Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Thank you, David Hockney

I started visiting the David Hockney website earlier this year while I was working on my dachshund paintings. I remembered he had done a book of paintings of his two dachshunds, and I googled and found his official website. I had become a fan of his years before when I was living in Southern California and first saw his strongly graphic and brilliantly colored paintings of the hills and canyons west of LA. I'm sorry now (duh) that I never saw any of his shows while I lived down there, but that was back in the days when I was afraid to go into art galleries. I think he's a brilliant artist and he's really made me think—in ways that find lots of blank spots in my brain—about what it means to create two-dimensional images of three-dimensional space. I gather from my reading that that's what cubism was all about, but as much as I love Nude Descending A Staircase, I don't get the sense of space from cubism that I do from Hockney's work. I think that to actually see what's in front of you and be able to analyze the differences between what it looks like and what it actually is, and then to convey that sense of direction and implicit motion in the painting, has got to be the most difficult thing a visual artist can do. I've been trying to capture an emotional sense in my paintings, but he gets not only the emotion but the feeling that your mind is really there inside the scene. It constantly boggles my mind that he was able to ask all the questions he must have had to ask in order to create those paintings of his interiors, and especially of LA and the iconic drives around it, like Mulholland Drive.

Anyway, I discovered to my great delight that since 2004 he's been making hundreds of paintings of his native Yorkshire countryside in the UK, and has made available on his website several slideshows of plein air sessions that I watched over and over for days on end. I really love how his paintings embrace all the trees and small plants—down to the hedgerows and roadside weeds—of the countryside, and the individual attention he gives to every single plant. Since I'm a complete sucker for the plant kingdom and good landscape paintings, nothing could make me happier than seeing one of my favorite artists take this particular journey.

I went back to his website last week and found a DVD for sale, David Hockney: A Bigger Picture, that focused on his Yorkshire work, and I ordered it. It arrived yesterday and I spent the evening watching the almost two hours of material. It's great, really great. You get to watch him set up, get his paints out, make his initial sketches and go to work on them, in the wind, in the cold, while the light changes and all the colors shift, while people come by and stop to watch—or ask him if he wants to come paint the wall in their pub. And he talks about the work, he answers questions and asks some, too. Several of his friends and contemporaries add interesting commentary. I thoroughly enjoyed every bit of it, but my favorite scenes are of him painting, and of him talking about how he went around for months with sketchbooks, drawing the individual species along the roadside, learning each one. His passion for his work just makes me feel that much more committed to the absolute necessity of painting as a way of life.

This morning while I was warming up in my studio I realized how much he is inspiring me. First, to focus on the images I feel a strong connection with, even if they don't look like conventional painting scenes. And second, not to be afraid to paint them even if they seem complicated or too detailed. Watching him paint shows me it is possible to pull out and simplify the few forms and lines that comprise the important elements of a scene in a way that conveys all of their emotional weight and visual textures. And third, that this year I need to start getting out into my garden to start drawing and sketching my beautiful plants, even though my garden as a whole is still in its infancy and not the paintable paradise I hope it will be in a few more years. I want to make a sketchbook like his. That's my goal for next year.

There's one other thing I want to mention that I really love about his paintings—the way he paints roads. He shows a road as what it really is: not an object, but an experience. It's the experience of driving through a place, of winding this way and that, going up over hills and down the other side, seeing different patterns and colors on each side. I love driving slow along the local narrow country roads—when I'm not getting tailgated—and luxuriating in the visual riches everywhere you look—fields of wildflowers, tall stands of firs and little Christmas trees in overgrown weeds, cows of many colors, dogs wandering, and cats hunting moles. I love to see the small differences in the plants from one month to the next, the changes of colors as growth and death leapfrog each other through time.

You can also find this DVD for sale on Amazon. Now that I've discovered him again, I really hope he keeps making more slideshows and videos. And more paintings, of course.

Cold-weather time is studio time!

Flying Kimonos

When the garden went to sleep with the first frosts, I was pretty darn ready to hang up my garden gloves and get back into the studio. I was also ready to try something new. I'd been buying printed origami paper over the summer when I came across it, and one day I picked up an awful old leaf painting on a small canvas, and started collaging on top of it. My first thought was to recreate the leaf shapes against a contrasting background, and when I finished that it didn't look anything like leaves. After looking at it for a couple days I decided the shapes really looked like flapping kimonos. I went on the web and found some images of Japanese doll faces, and found ones of both a young girl and an old woman, and added them. After that I added some very un-authentic (but fun) streamers along with some clouds, and finished it up by painting on top of the background to separate it more from the design. It's no work of art, but it was a really fun change.

Clifton Park Woods

Just last week I was rummaging through the local Goodwill store and came across a beautifully carved and painted wooden frame with just a few small nicks in it. I thought about it for a minute and snapped it up. I brought it home and took out the botanical print that was in it and cleaned the old paper off the back. I played a bit with a color scheme that would look good in it and decided on a fall scene that I photographed in central New York in early October and had been wanting to paint. I worked on it for a couple days and was really pleased with how it looked in the frame.

So far, so good. I have a small stack of fall scenes I'll be working on for the next several weeks. And I'll be sneaking out on nice days to whisper encouragement to the buds on my hellebores, and try to talk my two forsythias into giving me some flowers this next year. In a few hours it's the winter solstice, and knowing that the days will begin to lengthen soon does a lot to keep me looking forward to the signs of growth that are starting even now. Nature may look asleep, but she's really busy dreaming!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Priceless Gold

These are the days I look forward to as summer winds down in September. When the leaves start looking old and tired, the sun starts moving south, and the ground is as dry as baked bones, I start thinking of the sweet, cool rains of fall, the chill mornings and freshening breezes, and the slow awakening of the red, orange and gold colors lying hidden in the greens.

My garden is loaded with gold this year—and I feel richer than I ever have! My oldest Sango Kaku maple was the first tree to show color, and that was early in October. Now most of the other trees are in show-off mode and I'm spending a lot of time at the back windows just enjoying looking out.

Thanks to the maples, dogwood, and the weeping larch, my path down from the house is a lot more colorful this year.

If you go to the Crystal Springs Rhododendron Garden when the maples have turned and look past the long bridge, you'll see a beautiful pair of Japanese maples—one red and one gold. Ever since I saw that arrangement, I've been wanting to recreate it. I'm on my 3rd and 4th maples now, but I think I have the ones I want—my small O Isami, and the red Beni Otake.

Almost all the maples are in color now, including my little laceleaf viridis:

and the beautiful crimson palmatum Hilleri, which has gone through pretty much every shade of red now, from dark brick to orange-red and lipstick, to finish up at cherry. It finally got taller than I am this year.

The Satomi dogwoods are sharing the spotlight, with the one in the most sun going gold and red again, not as dark so far as last year, in fact so bright it glows. It's hard for my eyes to separate the colors in person, it's actually easier to see in a photograph. This is the one I planted bareroot as a single stick, and after 6 years it's at least 7 feet tall.

Although I can see bits of the big O Isami from my house, I have to walk down into the garden to get this view of my little maple grove, the O Isami and three Sango Kakus.

My paths are going to be getting a bit of dressing this winter. One of my friends has a bunch of long pine needles she really wants to get rid of. I got enough the other day to line the first two paths. I hope to get a thick enough layer to suppress the weeds. They're very nice to walk on. They're too slippery to put on the sloping paths, but I hope they work for the level ones.

The hydrangeas aren't going to bed either, without one last show of color, a lot more muted but still beautiful. These flowers were rich purple in full bloom, now they're pale blue-violet with fuschia frosting.

Have you ever seen a hydrangea do this? Maybe it feels like a poinsettia this year. I don't remember if this mophead is a named variety or one of the bargain pots I got at Fred Meyer, or what color the flower is. I'll have to wait until next year to find out again.

What a wonderful finish to the gardening year—to wake up to such riches.

Oh my—O Isami!

My big Acer japonicum O Isami is so gorgeous I wanted to give it its own post. I've gotten several good photos of it at the peak of its color over the last week and a half, and I can't decide which ones not to share. Every look I take at this tree makes my jaw drop.

It started out going lighter and then shifting to gold, but as soon as the leaves got gold they developed crimson edges, and many kept getting more colorful every day.

The individual leaves developed different patterns, a tapestry of opalescent brilliance.

I couldn't resist breaking off one of the more colorful leaves to play with.

I selected this variety two years ago at Meadowcroft Farm after seeing a 12' specimen growing on their grounds and seeing its rainbow of colors—red, pink, orange, gold and purple, and multiple shades of each color. I love the rounded leaf shape too; I'm somewhat partial to the maples that show it—circinatum, shirasawanum, and many of the japonicums I've seen. I tried one in a shady area and it didn't develop any color past a medium gold, so when I got this big one last fall I knew I had to put it where it would get more sun. This one gets full direct sun till about 11am.

A week later it seems to have maxed out color-wise, and last night's rain brought half the leaves down, but the leaves are almost as beautiful on the ground as they were on the tree. They make a great background for the Pinky Winky flowers and the fading hosta.

As long as it keeps looking like this, I'll keep going down to look at it.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

New glass for the Beavercreek Craft Fair

Another art and craft fair this Saturday, right here in beautiful downtown Beavercreek! I've been cooking glass for the last two weeks and have ten new pieces to show. Since I found out this summer how great the paler colors look in shady areas and even inside a room out of direct light, I've been wanting to make more pieces in these delicate tones. This took me a long time to figure out because I'm naturally drawn to the deeper, richer colors, but in a shady garden like mine, they just don't show up nearly as well as the lighter colors. So I have a bunch of new ones—like this one:

I've also been wanting to work out some shapes like my big radiant stars, but in a smaller, less pricey size. I think this 5" one has possibilities. I'll see how it does this weekend:

The BCT craft fair this Saturday is at Beavercreek Elementary out on South Beavercreek Road, and they're going to have over 100 vendors! That seems HUGE to me. I'll have my glass and greeting cards towards the back of the room where Santa will be posing for photos. I'll have cards of many of my paintings, and also of photos that I've taken around Oregon.

I've signed up for another local craft fair the first Saturday in December, at the Lions' Club Craft Fair. It'll be just south of Oregon City on Hwy 213. It's a lot smaller than the BCT fair, around 40 vendors, and it should be fun too. Both shows are from 10am to 4pm. I'd love to see you there!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

The sorrow of loss

The art and gardening community lost a really wonderful person recently, Bee Smith. I went to her wake yesterday and saw her beautiful garden again, and listened to young and old people tell their favorite Bee stories and their tributes to her strong and loving personality, her talent for getting people to do things. As one young woman said, Bee was mature in all the good ways, yet in all the other ways—and that was also good—she never grew up. I only knew her for a couple of years, but she welcomed me with a big smile to gatherings where I got to know most of my current closest friends. It was painful to see so many of those friends feeling so deeply the pain of this collective yet very personal loss, and I woke up in the middle of the night crying for them and for myself, reflecting on the longness of life and the shortness of our friendships, and remembering how hard it is, every single time, when you lose someone who's important to you.

I try really hard to be philosophical about death, trying to see it as just a part of the Big Picture, and trying to have the knowledge that I will one day die make my life even more rich and purposeful. But that doesn't make the sorrow any less real, or any less important. My logic compels me to believe that if anything in life is important, then everything is. That means that loss and sorrow are in themselves two of the things that we simply must experience in order to become human. I don't feel like I can explain that, or justify it, even to myself, at this point in my life, but I believe that someday—in some lifetime—I will understand enough to be able to.

Late this afternoon something dawned on me about Bee. She was so strong and fearless that you just wanted to lean on her. But what you didn't realize is that all that time you're spending with her, that fierce energy and hunger for life is rubbing off on you. You don't feel it happening—the only thing you know is that being around her, you gradually go from being completely intimidated and at times mildly horrified by her bold decisiveness, to thinking, "Oh yeah, of course we can do that, what a great idea." And now that she's gone on to her next job, you find that she woke up something in you, that you're resonating with a bit of that boldness and independence, with trust in your own ideas. You feel your kinship with all life, including rocks, and feel like everything is going to work out just the way it's supposed to. Bee was the kind of person who could do anything, and everyone who knew her is stronger for it. Everybody needs a Bee in their life at some point. I'm really glad she was in mine.

Monday, August 22, 2011

New colors, new big designs!

I finally stopped making glass for the Art In The Garden show this Saturday, and got pictures of them all today. The wind wiggled them a little but wasn't a big problem.

First, my favorite new color combinations...

Cranberry and greens

Shades of blue, aqua, and plum

Four or five shades of green

Cranberry, orange, and gold

I also started playing with larger designs, to fill up my new kiln. These are a bit over 6" across. First I tried using 1/2" strips...

Deep cobalt and aqua

Deep cranberry with grape streaks

Then I started seeing what I could do with the thinnest strips I could cut, almost down to 1/4". It took a couple tries and I had to change my firing program to get good solid joins, but I finally got what I was shooting for...

Aqua, lime green, and 2 shades of pale blue

Orange streaky glass with rich yellow.

These new radiant stars take a lot longer to cut and I used up a lot more bandaids, but I love the look. I also worked with pale tints of glass for the first time, and found that the paler pieces work really well in dim light situations, either very shady outside, against dark backgrounds, or even inside a dimly lit room. The pale tints, which would wash out in bright light, show up wonderfully in shade or shadow.

I'll have all these pieces and more at Estacada on Saturday, from 10am to 4pm. I'll also have a selection of prints and paintings and photo cards.

I hope to see you there!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Art in the Garden is coming!

The Art In The Garden show and sale is coming to Laurel Hedge Gardens again! The last Saturday in August a wide variety of garden and fine art and artists will be at this wonderful display garden a couple miles north of Estacada. This is a great excuse to come see some great art in one of the most beautiful gardens in Clackamas county. There are about two acres of all kinds of settings—oriental, contemporary, English, and ponds—with beautifully built structures, bits of whimsy and notes of elegance, great views of the surrounding hills, and a layout like a Disneyland for gardeners. They have a great shop with hundreds of reasonably-priced antiques and accents for house and garden, and a selection of unusual and hard-to-find plants that you can see right there in the gardens. Besides being amazing designers, the proprietors are committed plantsmen and very experienced with gardening here in the land of Crispy-Like-An-Oven vs. Where's-That-Summer-You-Promised?. Everywhere you look you'll see something beautiful, and every bit of it makes you feel right at home. Even without the art it's well worth the drive to Estacada just to spend a couple hours in the midst of all that beauty. And all that and wine-tasting, too! Hip Chicks do Wine are great!

I'm cooking up glass as fast as I can, trying out different color combinations and new designs, including several larger pieces from my new kiln. I'm going to take some paintings, but mostly it'll be glass, glass, and more glass! I've got a dozen pieces now and I hope to have at least two dozen at the show. I'll post pictures of some of them soon.

For more information on the show, including pictures from last year's event, follow the link to Laurel Hedge in my links section.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Celebrating the sun

The Sun Rises In The West
Week before last, I felt a painting wanting to come out in between gardening sessions, so on a damp day I sat down in front of a blank sheet of paper. I freshened my liquid acrylics, which had been sitting there for quite a while, and started just making graphic strokes. When I had some lines down I felt really good and happy about it, but couldn't figure out why because it looked awkward, uneven and inexplicable. I did like the colors though, so I kept playing with it, overpainting and eventually drawing shapes on it. After another day it took on the feel of a sunrise. I still was really having fun with it, and I realized it made something in my mind feel really good about the combination of well-defined simple shapes and the rough texture of the layering of the thin paints. I came up against a wall after that, but it was warming up so I went back to work in the garden and let it sit for a few more days. Today, after two long days of weeding, I wanted to work on it again, and ended up finishing.

I think it owes a lot to the time I spent looking at Richard Diebenkorn's work last year, but it also seems linked to the at-long-last arrival of temperatures hitting 70, and having the sun be out when I got up in the morning.

I took my car in for an oil change this week and the manager said "We're going to have summer from July 28th to August 4th." Well, I'll be ready.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

I said NO to coal

This morning, after watching Robert Kennedy Jr. on tv,  I watched the seven minute trailer for "The Last Mountain". I then logged onto the Portland General Electric website and switched my power sources to 100% renewable energy, and NO COAL. There's nothing perfect about what choices I have at this time and on a fixed income to get the power I need to run my home and do my art. But there's nothing acceptable to me about the mining, processing or burning of coal to get that power. I figured out that it will cost me an extra $150 or less a year to get my power from all renewable sources, and even though pennies are hard to come by in these times, I'm willing to pay that to help eliminate coal as a source of death, illness, pollution and environmental destruction in America. For my part at least, my artwork will henceforth be COAL-FREE. I know I and my plants will breathe more freely.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

A new kiln!

I got a new kiln! I ordered an Evenheat Studio Pro STP with an automated controller and an 8"x8" chamber. My old kiln is an Evenheat and I felt very comfortable buying a new one. Plus I got a great price on it from Fusion Headquarters in Newberg. It's really different having a controller so I can actually follow recommended firing schedules with the required precise control of temperatures for multi-layered full fusing. To start with I had to do a few experimental firings to figure out the schedule for the type of pieces I've been doing, but I couldn't resist the opportunity to make one bigger than I've been able to do before.

I made a big 2-layer ring of mixed opal and transparent glass scraps, 6 inches across. It came out pretty good, not far from what I expected, and is now hanging in the garden.

Once I got the firing schedule figured out, I started doing multiple pieces at once, and that worked great too. I've been really happy to see how consistent and repeatable the kiln operation is. Now I can start doing different types of pieces, lots of things that would have been completely impossible in my old kiln, now that I've got that controller.

One of my multiple firings, I did 3 pieces using the same color scheme of shades of green with amber, browns, and touches of cranberry. I had been previously siezed with this compulsion to add metal bells to some of the glass pieces, so the short icon that came out of this firing got belled:

It has found a home hanging off my front porch, where one late afternoon sunbeam has been coming through the trees and lighting up the lime green and cranberry, during afternoon sunbreaks. The bell's only going to ring if the wind hits about 40mph, but I love the warm shine of the tin, and I do love combining the metal with the glass.

I also went on a blue binge, layering a cold light cobalt blue on top of a warmer medium blue—I call it pthalo—it's as close to a summer blue sky morning as I can get.

I had been looking at my garden before the first leaves appeared and thought a lot about how I can add interest to my winter garden, and I decided that some more complex installations would go a long way toward giving me the visual treats I crave during those bare months. The first idea I came up with was to fire single-color rectangles and hang them between the rails of the wood fence between the house and the barn, where they'll catch the morning sun when it's out. The first pass of six pieces took me two firings, and I decided to hang transparent cranberry, orange, and yellow pieces on each side of the gate.

This is how it looks facing the house in the afternoon light. The orange is the only color that shows up brightly unless you're quite close to it. I'm thinking of putting some lime green pieces next to these. I'm also wondering how opal glass will work, if it's fairly light. It'll show up better against the dark barn and shadows than most of the transparent will. But every now and then from the house, when the sun's in just the right place, I can see all three colors, and it's a nice surprise. As the season goes on, they'll mostly become obscured by the foliage of the hydrangea, dogwood, and grapes planted on the fence. But when the leaves drop in November, they'll be back with their bright colors to light up my winter and spring mornings.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

The infinite riches of May

Liberty apple blossom above forget-me-nots

I heard on tv a Chinese description of a private garden—"Infinite riches in a small room." I loved that phrase, it really describes the month of May in northwest Oregon. As the days begin to warm, however so slowly, the first tentative leaves and blossoms shortly EXPLODE into a lushness that would do any jungle proud. In just a few weeks the country goes from still-bare branches on everything but the flowering plums to all the cherries and maples in flower and full leaf, all the conifers showing their bright new growth, and rhodies and azaleas and more in psychedelic effulgence.

I'm really proud of this pieris because it's actually only about 8" across, and half of that is new growth. I got it late spring, a year ago, at a going out of business sale for 50 cents, and made it wait in a 3" pot till fall, when I finally got around to planting it out. This one really is working hard to make me happy. I appreciate that.

The Peppermint Ice hellebores I bought decided late blooming was better than never. It's nice not having to wait till next year. This one was definitely worth the trip to Al's for, but I haven't decided about the mislabled one I paid the double price for that turned out to be a single. I guess the lesson for me there is to never buy flowers—especially expensive ones—out of flower. Oh well, learn the hard way.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Green grow the babies, oh!

This is exciting—it's the first year I have so many baby plants growing in the spring. Usually it's only weeds that I get to watch getting bigger every day. This year I've got these little lettuces. After weeks being just bigger than specks, they're finally starting to get visible.

The big clump on the left side is where the bag broke open while I was making the two rows. The front row is supposed to be French lettuces and the back are supposed to be Italians, and on close inspection they do look slightly different. Pretty soon I'll be thinning them out and see how they taste! Mmmm! This is my first ever home-grown lettuce!

My strawberry pots are looking good, leaves are getting bigger and I can see baby flower buds on both my Quinaults from last year, and the TriStars I bought this year. They're both everbearing. This pot is the Quinaults.

The two spinach plants in the center are getting almost covered right now, they're getting more leaves but the leaves aren't getting very big. I'm hoping they'll show a little more vigor soon, but either way I'll be tasting them soon, too. It could be there's only enough room for one plant in there. Live and learn.

I was going to put both sets of strawberries in the bed behind my back door, but I had a traumatic event when I bought a big box of fresh California strawberries a few weeks ago that convinced me to keep them in elevated pots. I was cleaning them and cutting the tops off in my kitchen sink, and after I put the last one on the bowlful, I noticed a piece of leaf I'd left on it. I reached over to pull it off and it turned around and crawled back into the berry! It wasn't a piece of leaf, it was a big old earwig! Bleccchhhh! So I took that one and the tops out and trashed them, and then carefully sliced all the others up without finding any more bugs. I've had ants and pillbugs get berries on the ground, but I have a full complement of earwigs in my garden, and I don't even want to give them a chance at my berries. Anyway, now they're up at elbow height, away from bunny rabbits and ground bugs, and I can just walk out in the morning and do comparison nibbling. Last year I got about 3 berries a week from my Quinaults and they bore ripe ones all the way into October, and I didn't get them planted till late. Two pots means twice as many, I hope!

So with all these dry days—let's see, I think there have been 6 or so, so far this spring—what have I been doing? Just this—

Weeding—weeds, weeds, weeds. This is the second dump load, another 30 pounds (20 gallons) of weeds, mostly little bitter cress, grasses, chickweed, and pigweed. I'm almost caught up, I've pretty much cleared the orchard, there are just a few patches I still really need to get. I do need to get into the veggie garden soon and check on everything in there. We should have a couple dry days next week, so I'll be getting down there then and get some new pictures. I can see things growing!

So exciting!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Trying to picture glass

I never thought of myself as a fan of red or gold, but this is now one of my favorite color combinations—for the glass, at least. I took this photo with the flash against a white background and then photoshopped the background to black, so it's something of a false effect—you'd barely be able to see any of it on against black.

I've been trying to find a way to get better photos of the glass pieces that show off the colors even in a small size, such as the thumbnails that are used on Etsy. The shots of the pieces outside against my trees are what they really look like outside, but depending how much light there is that day, different colors show up better and the piece can look quite variable. Like this one:

Plus, I would like to have a setup for shooting them inside the house, on the days when it's just too cold and foul outside. I can shoot if it's just drizzling, but when there's ice on the patio or the piece is whipping around in the wind, it's really more than I can cope with.

So I tried photographing some against a white background with lights on it to provide a little backlighting.

But although this shows the true colors of the glass, the problem is that the pieces never actually look like this, except in the photo.

When I added the flash, it makes it more as it actually appears, because you almost always see the light reflecting off the front as well as that coming through the glass. And the colors against the plain white background do show up better, even in small images. The hot spots from the flash reflections are a problem, and would never do for real commercial photos, but I can live with them. So I guess I just need to use multiple photos. I'll probably skip the photoshopping—that's just for fun.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Finally, some decent gardening days!

Not all my camellias made it through the winter (or the freezing temps two weeks ago) with their buds intact, so maybe this one is going all out to make up for that. This is an unnamed seedling I bought at Al's five years ago—it was the first camellia I planted here. It has semi-double red and white variegated flowers, and has been growing steadily every since I planted it—unfortunately too close to a main pathway. What was I thinking? I've been trying to figure out how to move it without seriously upsetting it, and I think I've finally found out how. I considered shaping it back, but it has a lovely loose form and as you can see, is certainly bloom-silly some years. So this year will be the year of the move. I was out yesterday afternoon weeding, and looked up and saw the late sun hitting the top of it, and all those beautiful flowers, and had to take a picture of this display. This is why I love camellias, and why I grow them. Mmmmm.

Yesterday morning while it was too cold to go outside I cooked up a new glass piece. I've done two of these diamonds, but this is the first one I'd call successful.

Medium turquoise blue, a bit of lime green, and some intense lemon yellow. Seems like a nice bright color combination, one that might show up well among the greens of the garden. I like how the shape turned out—almost straight on the edges.

So, a great day—glass, murdering weeds, and fifty red & white camellias!