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Dead River Roses


Here are some summer roses, fresh off the easel!  I don’t know about all of you, but I needed a reminder that the earth can do something besides hard, cold and grey.

Although this river is called the “Dead River”, it is anything but.  It arises in the heart of a sedge meadow that I am pretty sure is a glimpse of heaven, and flows gently toward Lake Michigan.  So slowly, in fact, it seems more like a long pond than a river.  Much of the time it is blocked by a sandbar which I believe is the reason for its name; it arises and ends right there in the park…except for when it doesn’t.  In those exciting moments when it blows out the sandbar, WATCH OUT!  It surges out into the lake, forming a standing wave of tremendous power.  People have been swept far out into the lake.  So, sort of a sleeping dragon, is my favorite river.

This and all paintings are available at

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Spring Bluff Marsh


I don’t have much to say today except I wanted to share this painting with you… I just finished it!  When I began the painting I had been reading about Pyle and the Wyeths, and was inspired by the drama they infused into their paintings.

While it is summer in my studio it is snowy outside, but this morning black-capped chickadees graced my garden fence.  Mud is in our future here, I can just feel it.  Soon it will be time to be checking in with the butterflies I monitor and return to seeking rare plants to draw.  I got rejected for an artist position yesterday but somehow getting back up does feel better than staying knocked down.

I know we all must have setbacks….although I’m tempted to ask, “Why???”… but I am reminded of a lovely phrase from a story my daughter and I read: “Blessed be the One who carries us day to day.”

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I Came across a new magazine I thought looked interesting: “Where Women Create Business”.

In one of the articles the reader is encouraged to know the ‘why’ of what they are doing.  “Why?” I thought to myself.  Well, because…. um…

The thing is, creating for me is like a volcano.  Images just bubble up, more than I can possibly keep up with.  I just go with the flow and enjoy the process.  It is wordless, this inner volcano, so putting into words the why of it is surprisingly difficult.

All of this did get me to thinking about the question though.  I remember a long time ago some authority figure (my mother?  a teacher?) telling me to stop asking “why”, that it was unanswerable and the wrong question anyway.   Now, my daughter has started asking the question frequently.  After a brief moment of irritation, I realize what a great thing this is.  It means she is tuning in, and wanting to make sense of the world that she is now perceiving.  She has come a long way.

And anyway, aren’t we all really wanting to know the answer to that question?