Smokey and dry with a chance of painting

As I mentioned in my last post, I am a bit side-lined right now with an injured shoulder (for those that inquired, it is not a dramatic story, just a flare up of a wear-and-tear injury I’ve had for years.) With almost everything involving my arms off the table (knitting, spinning, weeding, going out to SEO, doing any lengthy food prep stuff, golf) my options for the day were walking and watching TV.

I decided to cheat a little (sorry doctor (hopefully I won’t be sorry too)) and did a bunch of email / computer stuff and some painting, with a quick hike thrown in for some variety.


As I’m sure, well, everyone has heard there are a lot of fires burning the Pacific NW.

Smell some smoke? Here’s why…..I recorded the U.S. Forest Service’s Blue Sky computer smoke forecast for the Northwest through Sunday night….made this “public” so share if you’d like…’s where the smoke is coming from:

Posted by Bob Heye on Saturday, August 22, 2015

While it was cool enough that I opened the house and let the breeze blow in, the air quality was awful.

smokeyIn spite of that, I still went for a hike down at Canemah.


Canemah is a little scary. It’s been a few weeks since I’ve been down, and it looks like one of those old sepia-toned paintings.

The wetland areas, which obviously are usually dry this time of year, are completely and utterly dry.

The birds are quiet, but I did see an osprey and vulture as well as hear some blue jays and chickadees. But my most interesting find of the day was this guy.

salamander1A study of this site gives me a preliminary ID of a California Slender Salamander, but I’d take suggestions. My camera was not behaving, so I know it’s blurry. I also got these two (bad) shots.

Chance of Painting

Other than taking Finn for a trip to the dog wash (he says to please call the SPCA), today was not a wildly productive day. The good news is that I made some starts on my impressive painting to-do pile.

I’ll be frank. I think this is one version of this painting. I’ve been playing with some sketches and scanned this sketch into the computer.

step1I wanted to take this sketch into something more abstract. Liz Walker had a big week last week and put up a bunch of stuff on Facebook, which usually gets me into trouble too. I decide to take the sketch from above and put it on one of the marbled papers from her class (back in March).

battlefortheturn1I have a lot of work to do, but I’m liking it so far.

Next I worked on a “deadline” project. I signed up to bring in two paintings for the November “200 for under $200” show at the Oregon Society of Artists. I have had these sketched out for a while, and I’ve been trying to decide where to go with color schemes. On Wednesday I decided to go for it… I applied instant coffee as the background. I love the velvety result.

Today I added the grays of the tools and the flesh colors. I’ll take off the masking next (some masking is off the left-hand one) and move on from there.

Next I finished a steatlh project (more to come once it’s delivered).

sleath1Then I started another stealth project that I’ve been procrastinating. Not sure why because it seems like fun, but I have been. Today I finally started!

steath2I’ll try to get more done tomorrow. I’ll be just as useless for anything else, so painting seems a good way to go!