Saturday, August 7, 2010

Nevada City Retreat

I sometimes dream about getting out of the city and imposing myself at my mom's house in Nevada City as a sort of nature refuge/art residency program, but last week was the first time I really used my visit as an art-making excuse. I had a looming deadline for my show in Southampton and with four days off, what better timing to get out of the cloudy Bay Area and take my drawing supplies up into the sun of the Sierra Foothills.

Growing up there, I really never took advantage of any of the natural beauty of the mountains because I saw it every day and it just looked like a bunch of trees and dirt. But this time, as I took early morning walks with the dogs, I saw things I never noticed before. The trees were all shades of green and yellow, the bugs and animals were simply doing their things, and the symmetry of the plant life was inspiring. I felt like Emerson or Whitman, exploring the small, quiet mastery of the natural world around me. If I am getting off on a hippie tangent, it was only because I was quite in the moment, and it really was beautiful there.

A mighty companion.

Art + Nature= Nerd

I was thinking about picking blackberries all the way up there. I washed em right in the creek and ate them as I walked the dog.

We went to the lake nearby one day where my mom showed me a cove I'd never seen before.

Another walking buddy.

A wild raspberry! I ate it.

I am fascinated by headdresses right now, so when I saw this ring of plants I immediately thought of a headdress on the ground. I tried to lay down and take a picture of it behind me but I couldn't quite get it in there and I was glad no one saw me trying to do this.

In the sun-filled guest room. Back to work!

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