Mountain morning: coffee, sketching and autumn colors

The artist unfolded the easel on the high balcony of the rental where she was staying.  She chose the western view that held the morning sun in its strong golden autumnal gaze.  The second-hand easel had worn its joints and she had to gently lock the hinges in place to secure it.  The artist placed her blank canvas onto the easel and stepped back. She grabbed her mug of coffee and inhaled deeply the fragrant aroma, suspended it seemed in heavy mountain air.

Her eyes scanned the scene. An old farm house, sheltered and held by a strand of aspens turning green to gold. She took up her pencil and began to sketch and feel the sspen leaves shimmering and twinkling in the golden morning light. She caught whispers of her old landlord below murmuring to his cat and heard the clink and splash of a water bowl being refilled. She paused as she began to block out areas of the canvas to hold the dark, secretive mountain range at the back and the tall majestic spruce heavy with pines to the side of the house. The stately, deep-green branches offered shelter to the wild grasses and birds from the cool mountain wind.

The paper was rough and the artist could feel the pencil pulling the outline of leaves, branches, windowsills and porches out of and across the paper. The wind picked up; she squinted into the sun as she grabbed her coat closer around her. She felt and saw alternating casts of shadow and light move across the paper, the scene and her own canvas. Slowly, the tender strokes of her pencil began to reveal the daintiness of fall-colored leaves, the upright bearing of the aspen trunk and the weathering of the wood and paint around windows and eaves. She inhales deeply and exhales more deeply, noticing the dark clouds moving in from the west. The light swiftly changing, the coffee getting cold, she moves across the canvas capturing the ephemeral moment of a mountain morning.


Creativity Week 3: Found my creativiting then lost it to laundry, taxes and dishes

Week 3 was a bust. Aggravatingly non-productive, non-inspiring. I found it much easier to read about inspiration than actually sit down and nourish my own. I stopped short of organizing my pencil pot, tho' so there's some hope.

Getting creativity back into my life seems to come in fits and starts. I felt like I'd established some momentum and then all of a sudden it's 5pm and, although, the laundry and dishes are finished, I've not much to show for rekindling flair and creativity in my life. I suspect it's like a muscle that has to be constantly used in order to stay fit and able. Of course, part of working out is also for some hoped for yet maybe elusive improvement. And the same for writing or drawing or playing the guitar, I have to make the time to both maintain and improve.

Not all was a complete loss, however. I'm still working on my San Antonio: Blue Source article for Oxford American. Not that I've been accepted nor have I even submitted but you can't submit until you have something to send. So, I'm still working through ideas on that. 

I'm also working on a book about marketing/sales for small businesses (primarily in the foodie space). My partner and I have worked in a variety of different roles and for all sorts of  companies: some good, some perplexing, some I still bear the scars from and thought it would be great to share what we know about marketing/sales with companies trying to do good.

For Week 4: I've got big plans and have already made some progress. Provided I ignore the laundry, and the dog hair (from two dogs blowing their coats), I should have a little more to show/share next week.