Disapointment, Brain Storm, and Otters.

American Wigeons KS2018

I won't go into details, but last week I was invited to submit paintings for consideration into a big group show. I had been accepted in other years, against a HUGE pile of applicants. One year, over 16,000 people had submitted work to the same yearly show. I hustled at the last minute to apply, finishing up a painting the evening of the deadline. Taking photos of  three pieces, formatting them, getting every detail asked for into the package. I have been looking for someplace to shoot the new work into the spotlight. Someplace really public. This show would fill that bill. OK, you see whats coming, a few days later I got the universally dreaded decline letter. Realistically, when you apply to such shows, you do your best, cross your fingers and send your boat out to sea. If it comes back filled with gold, well, so much the better. The stinking part was not really the decline, but my minds leap to the 'FACT' that I don't have what it takes... I am "over the hill", I am deluded about my work... all that excitement of making the work was probably a late life manic episode or something. Really. Really?
I drug my butt around for a week... did not make any work... developed a stye in my eye, gained 4 pounds... missed a day at the pool.... got into a fight with Craig. OK. I'm over it now. I had to shake a finger at myself... get back into the studio, buy some new supplies, share the work with a friend or two... and update my art release plan. Here is the piece I worked on to finish. Notice the water in the wetland photos here... and the water in this painting....

Brain Storm unfinished KS2018
 It went from this....         
To this....
Brain Storm, Finished KS2018

My friend Burnell messaged me and said she wanted to go out and see the cold weather birds. We decided to hit the road on Saturday morning, weighed down with coffee, apple slices with nut butter,  some assorted sweeties, Cameras, batteries and time. We decided to go to The Yolo Bypass, with rumors of gigantic flocks of Snow Geese on their way out of  the Valley. The section of the wetland often  reserved for hunting only, was open,  so there were more ponds and irrigation ditches for us to check out.

Canvasback KS2018

Cinnamon Teal  and Coot KS2018

Green Wing Teal KS2018

Kildeer KS2018

Black Neck Stilt KS2018

American Pelicans KS2018

 Its important to keep lookin' UP, because you never know what you will see...

Thousands of Snow Geese KS2018

 ....A small section of a HUGE cloud of Snow Geese in the distance.... I guess the rumors were true!
And looking down.... 

Song Sparrow in the pond. KS2018
Another rumor was sightings of a Swamp Sparrow in this same pond/creek... we didn't see him, but it must have been a favorite spot for Song Sparrows... and ....
Two of four River Otters KS2018
 How can you stay depressed after watching these guys!


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  2. I am so impressed by the magical evolution of Brain Storm and the self acceptance and confidence that brought that painting into being. Kudos!

    1. Thanks Linda! It is really an adventure in the studio these days. You wind a prize for being the first person to post a comment on my blog. ....A birding tour next time your in town! Cheers, Kim


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