Monday, July 1, 2013

Small Worlds

Small work - roughly 8"x10" - yet to be titled
It rained so hard today - sheets and sheets of rain... 
for the first time in my life, I actually felt a little fear. 
I feared the ever intensifying rains might never slow. 
A clearing in mid-afternoon brought a steady rhythm of drops
in pools and puddles and overflowing birdbaths. Hemlock trees, 
mosses and ferns celebrated the rain by wearing balls of colored light. 
Tiny red and green jewels dangled and danced at the end of 
branches. Science tells me the water was refracting sunlight, 
but I recognize magic, too, when I see it. 

Small work - roughly 8"x10" - yet to be titled

In the studio last week, I practiced what I preach - the great 
exercise of many, many small studies to explore deep into 
the world of one's work. In a very small sketchbook, made 
teeny tiny paintings - about the size of index cards - 
and had a wonderful, woodland journey. 

The next 6 images are Teeny Tiny Paintings...  
they informed the Small Work above. 







I learn so much from this practice, and am interested in a 
number of them in their own right - small worlds I 
like to travel in.

The next three images are also exploratory, but they are 
the larger size, around 8"x10". In truth, I approach most 
of my work as an exploration, it keeps me searching, 
wondering what else is possible, what will I find, 
just beyond that next tree? 




I'm celebrating feeling a little better, day by day. 
I have posted more here in the past week than 
I have in long while. Trying out short posts to see what that is like, 
though this might not qualify as short anymore.

36 comments:

  1. Oh Valerianna! There's magic in your work! I love every single one of them. I tend to enjoy very teeny tiny works - the little format - it's like we're giants looking into a micro forest...

    Wishing you lots of health, energy and refreshing.

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    1. Oh, I'm glad you see magic. Thanks for the well wishes :)

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  2. I love your magical forests. So full of depth and mystery.
    Glad to hear you're starting to feel better.

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    1. Hi Lynn - thanks. Good to know my feelings about living in the forest translate - its deep, magical, and mysterious.

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  3. Thank you, Valerianna. It is so helpful to see how you work. I love that you think of each small work as a tiny world to explore. that is a wonderful perspective to keep in mind. So glad you are feeling better.

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    1. Hi Starr - I can't help but get lost in the woods... even when tiny.

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  4. so glad you are feeling better and your creations are wonderful, there is such mystery and ethereal magic in them... stay dry... moss is growing everywhere here...

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    1. Thanks, Caterina - yes, its so wet here in the forest, I think I might be starting to grow moss!!!

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  5. those misty greens. just like here.

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  6. So much light light light in those teeny tiny works Valerianna! Love your exploration of the dark and the light; the big wave of fear followed by the sparkling world after the rain, and those lovely dark trees surrounded by so much light. Beautiful!

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    1. I'm waiting for the sparkling to happen again, its been a while since we've had steady sun.

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  7. VA - what startling light you have achieved in your tiny works. Short posts are good when one has such content to share. And glad you are getting a little better. Go well. B

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    1. I'm responding to that light, too, Barry. Hope it continues to infuse itself even as the work grows bigger again!

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  8. Very glad to hear that your health is improving.

    These are wonderful paintings. I can't find the words - unusual for me, I assure you - to describe my response to these. But it's good.

    "Science tells me the water was refracting sunlight,
    but I recognize magic, too, when I see it."

    I would only substitute the word 'and' for 'but' in the above statement as the two are entirely complimentary experiences of the same thing. :)

    Peace,

    Austin.

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    1. I agree, Austin, about "and" instead of "but"... and I'm curious if over time you might find words of response to the paintings.

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  9. oh I love how you hold the witch light within & without V!

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    1. Thanks, Mo... "witch light", I'll ponder that!

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  10. oh my Valerianna: soooooooooo beautiful, just so full of the woods and the mists and vapours, it's like that here too some mornings, heat and moisture and we wake up to white low hanging 'clouds: over the fields and the river close by, they are called 'witte wieven' white women, there's an interesting explanation in English on wikipedia, tried to link it but couldn't manage.....

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    1. Saskia, the idea of "white women" mists is enchanting. I'm going to take a look at that. I love those low mists that settle in marshes.

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  11. valerie, this latest work is very very good.

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  12. There is nothing like the sweet smell of the rain in the woods. The weather is a bit odd these days, so I can understand why you would feel a bit vunerable in the forest when it rains a lot.
    The small tree paintings are very lovely, they are dream forests.
    Good to hear you are feeling much better!
    All the best,
    Jo.

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    1. Hi Jo - We're in another heat wave... though not too bad in the forest. Seems we either have rain or hot and humid. Dream forests, I like that, might need to borrow that!

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  13. I love the rhythms of branch and trunk, the way they sway and dance together to their own greenwood music, awash in the most ethereal light. They are like postcards from the forest! Thank you for the reminder to stay open, exploratory and curious about what is around the next tree.

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    1. Hi Carmine, speaking of greenwood music, I listen to that while making the paintings. It seems that I make better paintings if I really pay attention when choosing the music, must be a certain kind.

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  14. what beautiful light you create! also love the lines - some solid, some soft, and of course the colour - what beauty you create

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  15. i am so glad that you are feeling a bit better!
    your dreams are beautiful, i love the light you create in the background, it is so inviting.

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    1. Ugh... I WAS feeling better, but the mold was horrible with the heatwave, and I'm under the weather (or mold spores) again this week. Hope it won't last long! I like that you called the work "dreams", might borrow that!

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  16. Painting yourself back into good health methinks!
    Amazing to be so surrounded by little else than that amazing drenching rain for that time!
    Reminds me of the moment one switches out of "oh... its raining again" mode into ..."oh no ... this rain ... this is flood rain" and the worry begins to creep in.
    Like to see your studio n real life after all this latest work !

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    1. We've had sunshine and LOTs of heat. Now back to pleasant. Thank goodness!!

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I love reading your comments and sometimes I'm good at responding right away, sometimes not! Glad you had a wander here, I hope you found the mossy path soft on your feet and heard the call of the Raven.