Friday, June 29, 2012

Grand Canyon: Quiet Walk, and then!

Photo by Ell (recent graduate-Master's in Math-and all around good man)

Here are two paintings from this week's paint demos. They aren't done, of course, but they give me ideas.

I was walking along the Trail of Time this morning, contemplating the beauty and quiet. There is something that happens when you're here for awhile. The world falls away and there is a desire to slow down--way down. It's so subtle, yet powerful.

Then, I spotted large birds circling, and I thought that they'd found something to hunt. They swooped over my head and I began to shake. They were condors! There were about eight of them having a pleasant fly over, landing along the edge of an outcropping, talking to each other, observing. They looked like they were performing too, but there was no crowd.

Wishing you all time to slow down, disconnect and take in a little nature...


Barbara Muir said...

Wow -- these are such magnificent photos. And what you say is so beautiful. I love the paintings -- they are rich and true. I feel the way you feel on the beach in Nova Scotia. Thank you for giving this experience to us. Did you notice that one of the birds seems to have the number 30 written on the underside of his wings.

Thank you again. You are so kind.


Jeane Myers said...


Edgar said...

Boy, I am LOVING the sky and energy in your newest painting ... the palette knife work, with striated colors is just PERFECT for the Canyon.

The condors are amazing -- there's one shot of one overhead with his 'square' wings spread, somehow reminds me of Indian pictograms. And his serial number tags are so clear! It makes me feel good that someone is counting and minding this amazing bird population. How rare your experience was!

Linny D. Vine said...

Melinda, this is wonderful - you are on top of the world!! Paint like the wind!!!!

Melinda said...

Thank you, Barbara! I am so appreciative of your support. I feel that you are here with me. That is really cool!

I do wish I could share it all for real.

Virtual hugs!

Melinda said...

Thank you, Jeane! Feeling waaaay blessed.

Wish you were here!

Melinda said...

Thank you, Edgar! Yes, I thought the same thing about that one condor.

Melinda said...

Oh, Barbara, I forgot. I did a little research on #30 condor. He is three years old, was fostered. There is a searchable chart on these wondrous birds! I learned from a ranger that the group I saw were young, thus no red heads, and were more sociable than adults, flying around like a gang of kids. Interesting.

Melinda said...

Thank you, Linny! I am floating. I am riding the winds. I am flying high.

Wish you could be here too.

cohen labelle said...

Melinda, I am completely enthralled by these two paintings - you have a truly distinctive voice and vision!!!

What a thrill for you being there, soaking up Nature in the vastness of that incredible space. And eye contact with condors, a first hand witness to their awesome, menacing beauty. Your account prompted me to research them a bit and apparently they are endangered and need protection. And they have a wing span almost as wide as their life span! For sure the wonders of nature!

xo, Marcia

Donald Diddams said...

I love your comment about being in a magnificent place like that..."The world falls away and there is a desire to slow down..."
That's so important, and you may already be seeing the results in your painting -- not to mention the birds!
Thanks so much for sharing your experience!

Melinda said...

Thank you, Marcia!
It is thrilling, and exhausting, and surprising, and invigorating and wonderful.

It's a puzzlement to me, but there is a strong invitation to experiment--to move away from what I've been doing. Hmmm

Oh, those condors! Nine foot wingspan! I was at the Park Headquarters the other day where they have a replica of a condor with outstretched wings. It helped put things into perspective. We have a small bedroom at home that is about nine feet in width. That helps to imagine it too!

Yes, they eat shiny coins that people toss over the edge and they eat the gut piles of deer, with lead shot in them, that hunters leave behind. There is an exchange program available for hunters, and there is an educational program to encourage people to refrain from tossing their money into the Canyon.

Thank you so much for your comment about my work. You know how hard it is to tell whether a painting is "something" or not as an artist! We always wonder until they've been around for awhile...

Hugs to you!

Melinda said...

Thank you, Donald.
I feel as though you are traveling with us on this adventure. I'm grateful for your support. If you ever get the opportunity to come here, make sure you have at least a week to spend discovering the nuances of the environment. Actually, it would take a lifetime, but a week is a start.

Virtual hugs to you.