A strong vein... the
'mother-lode' in my very own back yard! A few days ago, I was walking
about and found it. The most beautiful concentration of RED earth I
have seen yet. In reality, it is a result of bonfires during the last
few years. Fire and heat has baked the minerals into a perfect cache
of nearly scarlet red ochre earth. I fetched my pail and digging
tools and set to harvesting.
A lovely little
Spotted Towhee that lives in the pear tree watched and serenaded me
as I dug. He has feathers the same colour as my newfound dirt!
As I have written
before (see Mud Pies and My Prince!), I am fascinated with using
natural materials as art supplies. So I was quite excited to have
such a beautiful colour of pigment to add to my studio palette.
Some chunks were
redder and purer than others so I kept them a bit separate from the
rest. I am processing some of the dirt with levigation method using
water. The two jars on the left are with the more concentrated
I was so anxious to
try my new pigment I powdered a little with my mortar and pestle and
mixed with a bit of acrylic medium. I then painted 2” high letters
on Strathmore 140lb watercolour paper. Because I was impatient and
skipped mulling it, the letters have a rough, raised texture. I like
it as it has an embossed effect.
I like the
simplicity and I think I will mat and frame the piece.
With summer coming
on I look forward to getting out more and I can't wait to see what I
find next. Every walk is an adventure!