Four-thirty in the morning. Sleepless. Rain, first light. So I prowled around in the yard barefoot, found a blooming iris, and watercolored it. Then back to sleep.
I bought a new domain name, http://www.juliamira.com, where, eventually, this julialoyd.com site will go. For now, there are two identical sites.
We were talking about the complexity of truth, its many-facetness. Camila said, trenchantly, "Things that people consider great are like octopuses, not like fish." That may be so, but what I like about octopuses is that, at rest, they curl their tentacles up. Also, they have six arms. The rearmost two, which look the same to us, are used as legs. Now you know.
I spent the last few days making sweat lodge drums. I learned from a man who was part of the Rosebud Reservation of Lakota Sioux. He taught me to make drums, but Native American copyright laws are quite strict and I don't understand them fully. As far as I can tell, I am authorized to make these drums but not to paint Lakota designs on them. So.
This is the first one that I've painted. I've always been fascinated by the archetype of the Green Man. He appears in English and Continental churches, among other places, with a head made of vegetation (usually oak leaves). Leaves come out of his nostrils, mouth, and occasionally even his eyes. This is a marine version.
We were at Rocky Bay Cafe and the light was very strange and I could not make out his expression. Sad? Angry? Resolute? Bitter? Vulnerable? I finally decided it was all of the above.
Someone once tried to teach me how to lay out a palette. Apparently, I wasn't listening.
Also, the cat is not as small as he looks. He is on the floor and the paint is on the table. Just saying.
This one was pretty fun, though it took FOREVER to paint. The mussels are from a doug-fir that fell off the sand cliff on a north-facing beach. It's been sitting in the water for a couple of years now. I was especially struck by the scarlet mussels. Maybe they're the young form?
We were clearing out space so I could plant a hazelnut orchard. I don't feel guilty for breaking the forested monoculture that our island has developed since the Indians left and stopped their regular burning and other farming practices. Nevertheless, it seems like some acknowledgement needs to be made. I believe that more hazelnuts will enhance habitat for the birds, animals, and humans that live here. This particular doug-fir might have another viewpoint. I'm listening.
The fish guide that I was working on last summer has been published! It is available from email@example.com or at Lopez Bookstore on Lopez Island. In future it should be available from other San Juan Island bookstores. Yay!
It's an interest I've had for years, but was a trifle nervous about. I mean, I like splashy watercolors, blobby oils, composition with no focus, the impact of zillions of things all crowded together in one spot. Scientific illustration is at the opposite end of the spectrum. Luckily, there is Spotify, and the album "Frida."