Tuesday, September 8, 2020

What I'm Working On ...

 



WHAT I’M WORKING ON . . .

This is a three-panel, two-sided, stand-up collage. It’s folded like an accordion book, but “book” is way overstated for what this is!

I lived in Japan for one year as a pre-teen. I visited Japan for 10 days in 2014 (when I was much, much older). That’s my entire physical connection with the country. But about 15 years ago, Japan kept popping up in my head, and then began appearing regularly in my art. Here’s the latest piece I’ve made that incorporates my memories, my collections, and the flea market that is my brain.

The first two photos show you the front and back (or are they the back and the front?) of the collage, and then two pictures showing you the details on two of the six panels.

What are all the items in the collage? Well, antique Japanese papers, hand-stained and hand-painted papers, pages from vintage Japanese books, Japanese ledger pages, my own photographs, vintage Japanese postage stamps from my collection, my own “faux calligraphy” scribbled onto papers using sumi ink, signature “chops” from a collection of Japanese hanko, and more.

There’s so much going on in this collage that it’s not exactly the “less is more” minimalistic, wabi sabi look one would expect of Japanese art, is it? But it’s quite representative of me and all my fleeting visual experiences and the constant “oh, look at this!” moments I’ve had in the country.

And it was Nietsche who said, “No artist tolerates reality.” Who am I to argue with him?!
 
©Copyright 2020 Carol Leigh




Saturday, September 5, 2020

AROUND THE HOUSE . . .

Because we're "isolating in residence," I spend a lot of time just wandering around the house with the iPhone, looking for things to shoot. Sunlight coming through the skylight over the stairwell looked pretty good, so I created a few simple compositions, liking the overall monochromatic look with just a bit of blue here and there. Lots of angles, too, to play with.

Copyright ©2020 Carol Leigh



 

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Around the yard . . . A cavorting deer!


These are terrible photos in that they're out of focus, not sharp. I was shooting through a dirty window at an animal that was at a distance. BUT THE EXPERIENCE WAS SO COOL!

I am walking past the living room window when I see the white buck. I pick up the camera that's sitting nearby, pre-set to f/5, ISO 800, underexposed by 2/3 stop. I take a few shots . . . am getting ready to change my settings when all of a sudden this guy has a major testosterone surge and begins zooming around, jumping into the air, suddenly stopping, posing, then kicking up his heels. (There's a doe in the middle of some bushes just out of frame to the left, which I believe is what instigated this adolescent behavior.)

As quickly as his cavorting begins, it's over.

And while he goes off to have a cigarette, I take a look at my shots and my heart sinks at their softness.

A white deer to me is exciting. And then to have a white deer do all THIS is bananas. So of course I had to share it with you even though it is far from my best work. I apologize. But the deer was cavorting! Hoo ha! ©2020 Carol Leigh



Friday, July 17, 2020

Around the yard -- downy woodpecker

A little downy woodpecker waiting his turn at the suet feeder. What you DON’T see is him slowly sliding down the slick metal shepherd’s hook. Woodpecker toes just aren’t made for clinging to slippery metal things!

©2020 Carol Leigh

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

Not one, but TWO white deer . . .



Five days ago, "our" white deer (born May 2019, attacked by coyote -- probably -- mid-July 2019) visited our property. You can see the scar there on his right haunch (and when's the last time you used the word "haunch?") which in this picture doesn't look like it's totally healed. Bad lighting, so you can't see it as well as you might.

He's also noticeably a guy -- see the nubbins where antlers will eventually emerge?

He wasn't accompanied by Mom this visit, which is unusual. I try to read nothing into it.

And then this morning, in MUCH better light, we see a different white deer, this one with lovely velvety antlers.

And do you see how overcast light works much better than bright, harsh sunlight for photos? (Not always, but at least a LOT of the time...)

So this is today's wildlife report. All photographed from the dining room window using a 35mm DSLR (with a cropped sensor) and a 70-200mm lens.

Copyright ©2020 Carol Leigh

Monday, June 29, 2020

Then and now . . .


Then and now...

Sitting at the dining room table two years ago and then sitting at the same place this morning.

Nothing except the placemat has changed and yet, and yet . . .

Life has gotten smaller in that we go pretty much nowhere. But life has expanded greatly in that our health concerns are all-encompassing and our world view is bigger.

Negative elements are played down. Small pleasures have ramped up.

Tears of joy one moment. Tears of despair the next. And we are not alone. Not alone. Yet we are.

It's a good thing that Chris, I, and the cat are all Geminis. Six personalities living in the same home. Never a dull moment in this current roller coaster of time.

Wishing you all health and happiness and hope.

Copyright ©2020 Carol Leigh

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Strange times call for strange pictures ...

I haven't used a "real" camera in months, and it feels weird. Being "isolated in residence," my time has been spent primarily indoors. Yours probably has, as well. I shall say no more about that.

What I've been doing, however, is riffling through old photo files, making physical collages, and blending them together somehow.

This is one example, and, frankly, I'm not so sure about it. Perhaps the most I can say is that at least it's different! I combined ink-stained papers I made a week or so ago with a photo of an osprey I took perhaps 10-15 years ago in Portland, Oregon.

Chris says it looks too contrived. And he's probably right. Again.

Image copyright ©2020 Carol Leigh

Thursday, April 23, 2020

Around the yard . . . newly-hatched juncos

We have newly-hatched juncos now in the nest just outside the front door. Three eggs were laid; now there are three chicks, just three days old.

Sorry for such a terrible photo. Taken with the iPhone in great haste, not wanting to disturb the parents too much. Better ones to follow . . . I hope!

©2020 Carol Leigh

Sunday, April 19, 2020

Happy Pollen Days!



Happy Pollen Days! 

When the light is right, we see clouds of this sticky yellow stuff poofing out of the trees. It is everywhere and on every thing.

Chris’s little pickup is now a yellowish grey. And no visibility through the windshield. Pollen buildup on the side window. Not that we’re going anywhere...

But I love the blue/yellow color combo on a water main cover I noticed on a walk down the street.

Are things weird these days or what?

©Copyright 2020 Carol Leigh

Sunday, March 29, 2020

Root beer 5 cents . . .

During my "at-home-isolation," I'm making the best of my time by experimenting with a variety of things, looking at older photos and tricking them out on the computer, as well as spending time in the studio making collage papers and new collages.

No rush. No pressure. No "have to."

So I came across this sign I photographed in a barrio in Tucson maybe six years ago. After playing around with it a bit, I declare it done.

Will I offer it on Fine Art America? Probably not. But for right now, in these strange times, it was a welcome respite from what we are seeing all around the world.

Copyright ©2020 Carol Leigh