Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Updates from my August trip to Wisconsin

There's always hope that I'll have a chance to see my family in the Midwest at least once or twice a year, but I had no idea I'd be making the drive twice in one summer! Steve and I had two-week long vacation up there, beginning the first weekend of August, to attend a wedding, visit family and friends, and spend some time at his family cabin (a place that is very dear to both of us, because that's where we got engaged). We drove because we wanted to take our puppy with us to experience some unleashed fun up north.

I don't have a lot of time to write (too much painting to do!), but I thought that I'd at least mention some of the highlights of our trip before my next post, which will no doubt be about the upcoming Nicaragua Art Show at my church.

Here are some pictures from our week at the cabin. We saw some amazing sunrises...

Sunrise over Pine Island

...Sunsets... (this sunset was so incredible, I look like a cutout! I was there - honest!)

Sunset at the cabin

...and even a bald eagle flying so close that you could hear his wings beating.

Eagle snatching a fish

I got some painting time in, while Bella kept me company.

Painting plein air 1

Painting plein air 2

And of course it wouldn't be a true cabin experience if we didn't go fishing.

I wasted a worm on this??

A peaceful canoe ride

Bella usually rode in the canoe with me, but occasionally she'd decide to jump ship for Steve.

Bella rides with Steve

Steve even modeled for me, sitting in the beautiful natural light that always comes in through the cabin windows. Hopefully I'll be able to finish this little head study some time next week...

Beginning of Steve head study, 8x10

After our time at the cabin, I had the opportunity to visit one of my closest friends from college, Laura Nehlsen. Laura was one of the best art models I ever drew or painted during my time at Hillsdale College. She was the *famous* model for my charcoal portrait that was featured for a long time on my website and business cards:

Laura - 5x7 - charcoal and chalk on toned paper - 2004

Now a proud mother of two, Laura is as beautiful as ever, and still a great model. We didn't have much time, but she sat for about 45 minutes for me, enough to start a portrait, which I will eventually finish from photos. She's one of those models who never has to try hard - she naturally exudes a subtle sensuality and grace. I only wish she lived closer so she could model for me all the time!

Here are the results of my hurried first efforts:

Beginning of Laura portrait, 8x10

...and here I am with the beautiful model.

Laura and Anna

I've come back feeling refreshed and excited about my many ongoing projects. I'll post more pictures soon!

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