Friday, August 10, 2012


I like to get up early to ride my bike.  This means I can get through town before the streets get busy and there are fewer people to laugh at me as I peddle all red-faced and sweaty up the hill wearing my goofy shorts and bicycle helmet.

Before long I’m humming down Poleline Road.  This is good because there is very little traffic out through the fields and bad because there are TRUCKS.  In the spring the trucks are hauling potatoes from the spud cellars to be processed into everything potato.  This time of year the trucks haul wheat with a few tandem logging trucks loaded with trees for added adventure.

I can hear them long before they come rushing by; nearly blowing me off the pavement in their wake.  This helps me focus and cuts down on lollygagging.

However, this morning there was a sunrise not to be missed.  The combination of smoke from wild fires and haze from the grain harvest pinked up the spacious skies and made the golden wheat fields look even more plush.

The big center pivot sprinklers which are used to water the fields provided quite a contrast.  I wished I had my other camera to truly capture the colors, but my cell phone had to do.  I dropped my bike and wandered into the wheat to get a better angle.

Then realized what I might appear to be doing--- squatting there in the field.
  Oh, well, those passing truckers probably needed a chuckle for their morning.

Here’s a shot of the amber waves of grain 
I got before traveling on down the hill and back home.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012


The Virtual Paintout location for August 2012 is Tasmania, Australia.  I "traveled" around the large island just south of mainland Australia by way of Google Streetview.  According to Wikipedia, must of Tasmania is still densely forested, with the Southwest National Park and neighboring areas holding some of the last temperate rain forests in the Southern Hemisphere.

Most of the forests I saw from the Google Camera were kind of scruffy and not too picturesque so I went down to Macquarie Harbor near Strahan on the west coast.

I selected this view of a boat landing and did a watercolor of the area.

I first brushed in a loose blue sky and brought the color down through the water.

I had masked out the whites of the boats allowing freedom to fill in colors around
them.  I dropped in the darks under the pier to give me a range for my values.

Then I got so involved in working on the painting that I forgot
to take any more photos.  This is the finished product.

You can see it featured here on the Virtual Paintout Blog for another few days.

Sunday, August 5, 2012


The other day I took my camera out to the farms to get reference photos of some of my favorite subjects--cows. Not only am I going to show you some of my pictures but you get captions too!

A city man was driving down the road when his car sputtered to a complete stop near a field filled with cows.  The driver, getting out to see what was the problem, noticed one of the cows looking at him.

"I believe it's your radiator," said the cow.

"No. It sounded like a fan belt," said another.

"I'd check the battery," a different cow remarked.

The man nearly jumped  right out of his city slicker britches!  He ran to the nearest farmhouse and knocked on the door.  "Your cows just gave me advice about my car!" he shouted, waving his arms back toward the field.  The farmer nonchalantly leaned out beyond the door frame to glance down the field.  "Those cows with the black and white spots?" the farmer asked slowly.  "Yes! Yes! Those!" the excited man replied.

"Oh. Well, that's Ethel, Daisy and Flo," the farmer said turning back to the man.  "Don't pay any attention to them.  They don't know a thing about cars."

FOR SALE:  Basic cow, $300; two-tone exterior, $125; extra stomach, $100; product storage compartment, $120; dispensing device, four spigots at $50 each, $200; genuine cowhide upholstery, $225; dual horns, $75; automatic fly swatter, $60.  Total = $1,205

What do you call a cow that doesn't give milk?
An udder failure.

I left you a present.  Hope you like pies.