"When dawn spreads its paintbrush on the plain, spilling purple... ," Sons of the Pioneers theme for TV show "Wagon Train." Dawn on the mythic Santa Fe Trail, New Mexico, looking toward Raton from Cimarron. -- Clarkphoto. A curmudgeon artist's musings melding metaphors and journalism, for readers in more than 150 countries.

Saturday, November 28, 2020

Cold Comfort

"Cold Comfort," 5 x y watercolor holiday greeting card

The full moon always pulls me, especially late in the year. Tonight November's full moon rises. Strong tides.

How much? All you have to do is type the word "moon" into the search box on this page, and you'll see how many times I've written about, and painted, full moons through the past 11 years.

Why? Just does. Memories and more.

Today's watercolor, for one of November's moon name, Cold. Yes, but there's comfort there too.

Friday, November 27, 2020

Full Moon Greeting

"Greetings," 5 x 7 watercolor greeting card

November's full moon is almost here, bringing beauty and memories into the sky.

Also known as the cold or frosty moon, and the beaver moon, it's the last full moon before the winter solstice.

All I know is that, regardless of names, I look forward to full moons...they light up the night, my memories and my moods. When shining on snow, they're almost magic.

Today's greeting card,  the almost full moon rising, the last light of the sun perhaps, with a warm yellow. However, the next two days will indeed be "cold" moons.

Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Rugged beauty

"Brazos Beauty," 5 x 7 watercolor holiday greeting card

As this rugged year nears an end, we need to remember that out of ruggedness, in nature and humanity often comes beauty.

For me, some of the most rugged beauty I know are the Brazos Cliffs in Northern New Mexico.  I've seen them in summer, fall and winter, usually driving from the east from Taos  and Tres Piedres on remote scenic US 64. Coming up on them from the east, you can stop and wonder at the dramatic overlook, as they tower about 2,000 feet above the Chama River valley. 

Once you descend the winding highway down, they loom over you as you head north to Chama and Colorado. At their base are lodges and cabins, hiking trails, and towering Ponderosa forests and trout streams. The granite cliffs are the oldest rocks in New Mexico, at 1.8 million years.

From the top or bottom, in all kinds of weather and especially late in the afternoon, they are simply awesome. 

Today's watercolor, for a New Mexico friend, because I need to remember, beauty is everywhere--Brazos Cliffs, after a snow storm, a memory of what I saw one late fall evening.

Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Harvest's home, Thanksgiving

"Harvest's Home," 5 x 7 watercolor holiday greeting card

by in store," wrote the Apostle Paul to the Corinthian Christians long ago, urging them to save their gifts for those in need.

That phrase has an agrarian  basis, as rural people always took their harvests and prepared for the coming winter--whether canning garden  fruit and vegetables, or putting up feed in barns.

I suspect the Pilgrims did the same 401 years ago when they celebrated harvest with the first Thanksgiving.

Barns always catch my attention, and become painting subjects, even though I'm more urban and rural. Why? Don't know one reason, but perhaps one is that they are home to harvests...laying by in store during hard times.

Monday, November 23, 2020

Winter haiku

"Winter 2020," today's 5 x 7 watercolor holiday greeting card

Winter looms, as we

Hope holidays bring warmth back

In a bitter year