On our small horse farm we are fortunate to have one of those 100+ year-old, three-story wooden barns, and are even more fortunate that it is in exceptional condition. Over the years I have found various 'treasures' in that barn, such as the writing on a wall indicating that it was built in 1884. But more often than I'd care to admit I am guilty of running through my life on auto-pilot. Consequently I sometimes do not really see what is around me. Such was the case with the subject of "Rope and Pulley", the current piece which I am very near to completing.
The old iron and wood pulley hangs on an oak beam near one of the barn doors that I rarely use. Despite this I have walked by it countless times, never really noticing what a fascinating object it is............until one morning in early July it captured my attention. According to my neighbor Wilbur, an eighty-five year old gentleman who owned and operated our farm for several decades, the pulley and its accompanying iron hook were used to lift hay into the hay mow. One end of the rope was attached to horses outside the barn, who would lift the hay via pulley when driven to walk forward.
I look forward to finishing this piece -- hopefully a couple of more days will do it -- and then plan on taking a brief 'break' from drawing during which I'm going to embark on a search for a new laptop computer. Incidentally, when talking with an out-of-state friend today I described our barn as structurally resembling one of the old "Mail Pouch barns" , and was surprised to find that not everyone knows what a "Mail Pouch barn" is!.................(I won't mention any names, but..........the link will further the education of those not familiar with this agricultural icon!)
On August 15, the 2009 Art Kudos International Competition and Exhibition opened featuring artists from fifteen countries. I'm pleased that my graphite, "Canadian Cowboy", was accepted as one of the 132 finalists in the exhibition. Fellow Colored Pencil Society of America member Holly Bedrosian was also accepted as a finalist. The finalists and award winners will be posted online for one year, after which the exhibition will be available through the Art Kudos archives.
It seems to have taken me a long time to recover from the CPSA convention week in Atlanta, Georgia, which was followed several days later by a quick trip to my brother's home in Michigan's upper peninsula. Both my 17-year old son and I were challenged by 20 hours of each other's constant company during the drive there and back over four days!
In the mean time, I am excited about and have been preparing for my first gallery exhibit: a three-person show with fellow colored pencil artists Bonnie Auten and Dianna Soisson, both of Michigan. The show will take place at the Hudson Gallery in Sylvania, Ohio from September 1 - 26, 2009, with the opening reception on Saturday, September 12, from 5 - 7 p.m. I, who am not accustomed to working under rather short deadlines, am scrambling to get the last piece finished in time to be photographed and framed for the show. (I've realized it is good for me; I need to put myself in the position of having a deadline more often.) More detailed information regarding this exhibit soon.
What an experience the past few days in Atlanta, Georgia have been! Though tired and feeling somewhat bedraggled since my return home late yesterday, the Colored Pencil Society of America's 17th International Exhibition was a tremendous experience. I so enjoyed the time spent with good, old friends, as well as developing friendships with artists I'd not met before. As usual, the quality of artwork in the exhibition was exceptional. Many thanks are due to the CPSA board members who keep the wheels of this large organization turning, in addition to planning the exhibitions, convention week, and other events. The exhibition will continue on display at the Jacqueline C. Hudgens Center for the Arts in Duluth, Georgia until August 29, 2009. Award winners can be viewed at http://www.cpsa.org .
In addition to the exhibition and convention itself, a highlight for me was the fact that several family members from the Atlanta area, as well as up to several hours away, attended the exhibition and opening reception. I am so fortunate to have such supportive family and friends: it means so much to me.
Photos from top to bottom are: 1) awards night banquet; 2) Neil and Jean Fletcher, my uncle and aunt from Tallahassee, Florida, and I with my piece, "This Above All"; 3) Deborah L. Friedman of Massachusetts, with "Garden, Late Summer"; 4) Dee Overly of Michigan with "Crossing the Elements"; 5) Bonnie Auten of Michigan, winner of an Award for Excellence for "Sweet Temptations"; 6) Elizabeth Patterson of California, winner of the Robert Guthrie Memorial Award for Outstanding Achievement for "Sunset at Sweetzer, 11 pm".