While on a canoe trip in Killarney Provincial Park, we were excited to witness the emergence of a dragonfly from its nymph state. Dragonfly nymphs are strange looking creatures, pretty intimidating if you don't know what they are. When the newly minted dragonfly split its old skin to come out, the discarded shell was reminiscent of a cicada shell; brittle and fragile and retaining the exact shape of its previous self. It was thick through the body with shriveled up wings like when a butterfly comes out of its chrysalis. It rested then pumped the blood from its body into its wings, getting thinner and thinner while its wings grew flatter and longer.
Really enjoyed the challenge of building up layers in this drawing. Watercolour, ink, pencil, erased sections, even some work with water soluble pencil. Also, I gave one of the ghosts legs. Maybe it is only pretending to be a ghost?
Spring this year was filled with ink work and puppet making. I may have continued with my slight obsession with chrysanthemum dragons, rendering them most often in india ink. Lots and lots of little loops. It felt like I was writing them into existence, minus the words.
Much beautiful snowfall here in the last couple of days, I am glad to see it, but equally glad to daydream ahead to April and the beginning of the garden. These pictures were taken in our garden at twilight, with a lightsource from the parking lot next door which combines a pink light with a white-blue light. It was kinda magical...
I have added some ink and brush drawings to the Drawing section above. These dragons are very satisfying to draw, so many loop shapes.
Thanks to the loan of a reflecting circle thing and some black foam core from my sister (Alex Lang Photography), I gave shooting on a black background a try. These two conjoined creatures are part of my ongoing Twin series, currently titled Inseparable. I love how the black sets the colours of the puppets off, but I will definitely try shooting them on a light background as well, and see which looks better.
Recently we were out exploring an area near Omemee called Windy Ridge Conservation Area. It does in fact have a windy ridge that borders a horse sanctuary. If you stand and look at the horses long enough, a donkey will come over and stand between you and the horses. If you want to get to the horses you have to go past the donkey first, and no one gets past the donkey.
I do not have a picture of the donkey.
I do, however, have a picture of some cool lichen I found.
If I were reincarnated as lichen, I might want to be this lichen.
And, since it is a pretty hot day here in Port Hope, I will share with you some nice chilly pictures from February. One is of Bryn throwing a stick on the beach, and the other is of some frost on our kitchen window.
Though most of my recent puppets have been made entirely from cloth, I am working on a small series of hand puppets that have papier mache heads, which hearken back to my previous way of approaching puppet making. These puppets are less traditional, as they are all conjoined in some way or another.
Painting patterns on cloth is an especially satisfying activity. I like to buy large white linen tablecloths and cotton sheets and pillowcases from thrift or antique shops. Then I tear or cut them to the size I want and go at them with the watered down ink and acrylic paint. Also handy to have a spray bottle of water; I use it all the time now, I don't know how I did without. Good old spray bottle.