Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Slow Shifting

work in progress, 15 x 22", VClaff 2013 
I'm quiet today... as the cold stillness settles into the forest, the last of the golden 
leaves spiraling to the white-dusted ground. In the studio, the paintings glow 
with a deeper yellow-orange, as I attempt to capture the extraordinary luminosity 
of late October and early November. I imagine soon there will be a shift in the work in 
response to the slowly transforming woodlands. 

work in progress, 15 x 22", VClaff 2013

"October Tree", watercolor, 10x 8", VClaff 2013

Looking at the pinboard, I see the seasons shifting from winter to spring, to summer 
to fall. 



Things get rather chaotic on the worktable when I'm painting. 
Below is the completed "Beechwood" which I posted a photo of before 
 in process here in case you're interested in seeing how things develop. 

"Beechwood", watercolor, 15"x22", VClaff 2013
The painting below, along with a number of other small watercolors, are now 
listed in my Etsy Shop. The galleries I work with don't seen interested in smaller 
works these days, so I am able to offer the small work at very affordable prices. 
A number of people have asked about purchasing work over the last few months, 
but were on limited budgets. I really wanted to create a body of smaller works
that many more people could afford. Take a peek HERE at my shop. Or find 
the Etsy showcase down below there in the sidebar and follow the link!


"October Sky", watercolor, 8" x 11", VClaff 2013
Pasha is really showing his elder years with this season's cold temperatures. He is 
in and out of the studio and on top of the gas heater for a warm-up when inside. 
I've been feeling intense grief now and again as this little cat-love-of-my-life is 
changing. He may decide he might like to follow my mother to the other side soon. 
Its a lot of grief to stack on top of the other, and sometimes my heart just breaks. 



I'll leave you with images of my walks and wanders - the forest 
of my inspiration and the most spectacular November skies. 

















51 comments:

  1. I too well understand your sadness about your friend Pasha - it is a sorrow anticipating their leaving us. He is a beautiful cat, very special.
    And thank you for your art, your photos in the woods. Am reminded of what I think of as the ultimate November poem - the 73rd Sonnet - "that time of year when yellow leaves or none or few ..." or close to that.
    best,
    Mary

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    1. Thanks, littlemancat, I know many share this sorrow! And thanks for the poem.

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  2. magnifique arbre d'octobre!!!!

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  3. I do love taking a walk in the forest with you
    and
    my Martha sends a purr to Pasha
    at very long distance - from Australia via Oregon...

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    1. Thanks for joining me on my walk, India, and Pasha and I thank you for the long distance hug. You DO get around. I am too rooted to imagine it.

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  4. This season, when it reaches the zenith of the yearly wheel. It brings much joy in it's colours and moods; it also brings us sadness in the reminders that all things move on and leave us. Sending you much warm wishes and hope that Pasha stays by the heater for a little while yet.

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    1. Thanks, Charlotte, he is perking up today, which makes me very happy. Maybe its the warm and sunny day.

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  5. I love how your surroundings directly 'feed' your art (was looking for a different word, but just can't remember it... must be having a 'senior' moment). These golden works are stunning!
    I understand your trepidation regarding Pasha - I have had to say goodbye to so many... yet, they remain in our hearts forever.

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    1. Thanks, Stregata, happy that the work resonates with you. And yes, I have many furred friends living in my heart.

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  6. Your new paintings perfectly reflect the change of seasons ~ so lovely!. Long, gentle hugs to Pasha, and to you...

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    1. Thanks, Donna-Q- We are both grateful for the appreciation and the hug!

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  7. VA - luminosity - such a beautiful word to describe the different shades of light; and I love that you now have a seasonal series of the trees and light. B

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    1. Barry - yes, its interesting to look at the changes in this work over the months. March will be a year since I started making this series, looking forward to seeing how the second season of cold and icy light will influence the work, especially now that I know it better.

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  8. it's just Love. isn't it. such a life long learning and surrender.

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    1. Yup, Grace, life long learning and surrender...

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  9. So much beauty here, in your paintings and your forest and skies, Valerianna!
    I adore the colours and mood of late autumn that you've captured here.

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    1. Thanks for the feedback, Lynn, always good to feel one's eye and handwork is appreciated!

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  10. How hard it is, realizing that your beloved friend is winding down. Yur time together is even more precious now, I know. Priscilla Stuckey (Kissed by a Fox) writes about communicating with animals using feeling-pictures. Her friends asked her to communicate with their elderly dog, and she asked the dog what the dog thought death would be like. The dog sent her a feeling of "melting away, spreading out quietly into everything...a feeling of deep quiet and intense calm, of all being right just as it is." How I wish I could communicate with my cats in this way...it might help in small measure comfort the grief at their passing. Blessings to you both in your glowing forest home.

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    1. I try to communicate with Pasha this way. Sometimes I think it works, sometimes I don't think I get it right. He's really been enjoying cuddling these days, and I use this opportunity to offer him lots of Reiki. He seems to be enjoying it.

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  11. Peace to you. Some seasons have a tinge of sadness and the cold has a way of showing many of us our age,,, I pray for many more summers together for you and Pasha, because that is what you need.

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    1. Thanks, Sandra, me too. Pasha had a rough day yesterday, but today he has perked up with the unseasonably warm and beautiful day! He is snoozing with a big kitty smile now on his blanket in the corner after a long day out and about :)

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  12. Ah, V - This beautiful post really resonates. I, too,am in a season of melancholy as I search the new year's still distant but fast-approaching horizon knowing that all things change and loss is inevitable, especially as we are all so much older. Our good William Wallace is ancient, too, and seeing him stump about more haltingly brings a catch to my throat at times. Cherish the day, cherish the day now. Hugs, sus

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    1. Ah yes, the ancient William Wallace... wishing for those 9 lives right about now!

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  13. Your photos as well as your beautiful watercolors capture the fall light perfectly. I especially love the first one. Your deep connection with your place is evident in each and every one.

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    1. I like that first one, too, Sharmon. These paintings feel rather intense!

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  14. I am really enjoying these new and different trees. Also, I am sending strong and healthy wishes for Pasha.

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    1. Thanks, Jodi, Pasha is feeling better, must be all the well wishes he is receiving!

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  15. ah, our neighbor woods. so beautiful.

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    1. We live in a neighborwood... ha, like that.

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  16. Love these striking new paintings, Valerianna.

    I feel that I have met your beloved Pasha and wandered through the forest with you, laughing at his antics. Hugs to you both.

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    1. Hi Robyn, receiving your hug with gratitude.

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  17. you've got the gold V!
    sending a warm Gardenia scented summery breeze through the ether and Ariel sends gentle purrs to Pasha.

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    1. Great, Mo!!! Here's hoping the gold comes along after the leaves have settled.. I could use a bit! Thank you, Ariel, for gentle purrs for Pasha.

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  18. Your October trees remind me a bit of the a majestic stag's rack or Herne himself. Lovely how your outside world gently walks, glowing into your paintings. Hugs and blessings to you and dear Pasha.

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    1. Love that, Lisa... I will look at the paintings again with stag racks in mind!

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  19. Beautiful paintings, beautiful words, Valerianna. How sad to think of Pasha leaving.........but you never know. He may stick around quite a while longer, just, more slowly............

    love Lauren

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    1. Thanks, Lauren... yes, sad, but Pasha has perked up a bit after acupuncture yesterday and has started on Chinese herbs and a homeopathic remedy. Still tired, but sooo much better today than the last two weeks! So, at least he's getting excellent support now.

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  20. well my friend across oceans and landscapes ... lots to say, where to start.
    Love the chaos of a good active workspace and desk mid-flight!
    The paintings are burning bright, luminous, moody, full of energy!

    The landscape around you is wonderful in Autumn, as it is in each season when through your lens!
    Ah, Pasha. . . . .precious one!
    S

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    1. Good to get feedback on the new work.. I'm still, after almost a year, just beginning to feel like I'm really getting somewhere with it and able to see it better.

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  21. Valerianna, You are one with your world ... you are golden like the light. I feel mystery and mist and haunting when i visit.
    take care little Pasha

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    1. Haunting is a word that keeps coming up with this new work, guess its something deep within our psyches that we feel in the forest. Maybe I'm getting somewhere with this work if its translating that!

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  22. i so enjoy seeing how your painting unfolds!
    your photos and paintings are gorgeous, you have a wonderful way of seeing our world and re-creating it through your heart and creative heart.

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    1. Thanks, Tammie... I enjoy your work for the same reason!

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  23. You have an excellent talent for capturing the light in both your photographs and paintings! Loved seeing pictures of your Pasha kitty. He looks like such a sweety.

    I just discovered your site when I came over from Moonlight and Hares. I am your newest follower on Google Friend Connect.

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    1. Welcome to RavenWood, Susie, and thanks for the feedback. Lovely Santas in your shop that I just went and peeked at!

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  24. o mai your words about Pasha were reality with my dog Tovke.......i was afraid so long for her to go but i realized i had to be happy for her sweetness 14 years
    but yes the fear the fear....

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    1. Yes, there is a moment when we must be ever so grateful for all the time we have gotten, long run, really for animals!

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  25. how the year has flown, seems like only tesrday or maybe last week and I was looking at your winter series....these autumnal scenes are so breathtakingly evocative, wow.

    oh so sad to hear of your Pasha's poor health, they are such a large part of our lives aren't they; as you well know I'm still grieving for our Tungsten and it is tough at times, but we go on, of course we do; I am thinking of you in your woods of inspiration

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    1. I've been wondering how you've been doing with your grieving... so hard. Pasha has been through a tough time, but seems to be coming out of it after a few vet visits and one new one who uses acupuncture and Chinese herbs. He is improving steadily and even went out (for a very short walk with me) in the frigid, windy day. I'm glad the autumn paintings speak to you, Saskia. Its been over a week since I've been back in the studio with all the kitty things going on!

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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.