A few years ago, we were lucky enough to travel to Greece, and my all-time favorite stop was the island of Corfu. We hired a local man, Spiros, who drove us around, showed us some of the gorgeous off-the-beaten-path beauty, and explained what daily life was like in the small town.
Corfu Canapés – Lunchtime in Corfu, Greece Watercolor
At lunchtime, Spiro stopped at a tiny store and bought a loaf of fresh, crusty bread and local soft cheese. We drove down the road to a building that had outdoor seating, as well as gardens of basil and tomatoes. Spiro sliced the bread, cheese, and tomatoes, drizzled them with olive oil, and sprinkled fresh basil and herbs on top. This was served to us with local olives and tastings of red wine followed by shots of powerful, black-licorice-tasting ouzo. I can still remember the crispy bread, the creamy, delicate cheese, the pungent herbs, and the fresh-pressed olive oil. Opa!
Black-billed Magpies were abundant in the areas we visited in Montana and Wyoming last month. Never having seen one before, I was struck with their extremely long tails, the beautiful flashes of white shown in their wings when they fly, and the blue and green iridescence of their feathers.
If you are familiar with their relatives – crows and blue jays – you can imagine the raucous, sometimes piercing chatter of these curious birds.
I’ve been blessed to be away for the last two weeks on an adventure to Glacier National Park in Montana and Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming. The parks were so different from one another but each was unique and breathtakingly beautiful.
Unfortunately, GNP was a bit smoky because of wild fires on one side of the park, but we were thankful to have had a couple of clear days. The smoke added a layer of mystique to much of the landscape, and I send well wishes and thanks to all those involved in containing the fire.
Yellowstone was a place of wonder, enchantment, and awe. I saw things I never knew existed, and I was mesmerized by bubbling, gloriously colored pools of hot springs and spurting geysers. It was like being on another planet!
I left with art supplies in hand and with high hopes of creating on location, but we were so busy that I just now finished my first painting. I gathered tons of inspiration on the trip and hope to do justice, through my paintings, to the animals, landscapes, and natural beauty experienced in these wonderlands.
This little ground squirrel is the first of many drawings and paintings to come.
When we go to the beach as a family, our goal is to relax and reconnect. A favorite activity is simply walking along the beach, observing and exploring, looking mostly for sharks teeth and any novelties that wash ashore.
A few years ago I spotted a bright orange color in the surf at low tide, just as the tide was starting to creep up. I figured what I saw was probably a washed away beach toy but wanted to see for sure. The orange object was covered by the quickly rising tide a couple of times, but I was able to keep track of it under the waves because of the bright color. Reaching for a third time I finally had this great Lion’s Paw scallop shell in my grip. It was such fun to paint, too, because of its unusual color.
Lion’s Paw Scallop Shell in watercolor
Over the next few weeks I will share paintings of other beachy goodness as I participate in the #naturedoodlewash adventure. Again, thanks to Charlie for hosting the event.
Hope you all have a terrific weekend!