Sunday, April 27, 2008

Morrell Mushroom Quest

Well, this weekend was calmer than last weekend (remember the pasture fire post?). We finished the pasture burn that we couldn't finish last weekend and all went as planned, dang it! Not much to journal about when all goes well. With our recent rains and sunshine, mushrooms are in season. Had to go out and hunt some morrell mushrooms. It's been years. This post shows how that went and a couple bonuses of the hunt.

Lifetime Worst Air Travel Day

Everybody need a 'worst' of every activity we do. We need something to compare future activities against. So, I guess I am pleased to have set a new worst air travel day for me. All future travels MUST be better than this one. This was the convergence of three storms: bad weather, mechanical trouble (prior day) and a busy holiday (Spring Break). And as much as all of us like to TELL everyone of bad travels or bad traffic, nobody really wants to hear the whole story. So I tried to graphically show what the day was like. Much less painful to see than pages of text.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Tribute To The Ford 8N Tractor

I love this tractor! My family owned one when I was growing up and my brother has one now that I can use. It's not a perfect workhorse but it's lovable.

The picture was transferred to the journal with a neat product called Sheer Heaven, and can be found on the Art Papers section of Jessica Wesolek's website This is not a paid endorsement, but it's a neat product. Print the picture onto this product at your computer and, with rubbing alcohol, you can transfer it to your journal.

I used a grid to show what I consider the unique or memorable attributes of the tractor. Too bad I can't capture the gas fumes of a flooded out engine, the really really slow cranking speed of the starter motor, the long grinding time before the engine fires, or the wobbly front wheels as you flash down the road at 15 or 20 m.p.h.

Garden Planting Time

Every Fall and Spring I have a date with a machine. The garden needs tilling, and that's my role in life. The wife does the planning and everything else. I have one task and success depends on the tilling machine RUNNING. Is that too much to ask?

Spring Break

We used our daughter's college Spring Break to go down to Oklahoma. The eastern part of the State has plenty of lakes and hills and trees, etc. We wanted to get in some hiking, rapelling and top-roping. Kansas is rather vertically challenged and places to use our ropes and gear are minimal. We don't do anything radical and we don't do technical climbing. We rented a cabin at Lake Eufaula and drove to Robbers Cave State Park for the fun stuff. Never been to either place and I'd go back again.

Me And The Beast

We live 9 miles out of town in pasture land. Small rodents abound, and we are in their back yard. Sometimes they end up where they shouldn't. This journal entry tells of a recent encounter and it's resolution, real and imagined. I liked the challenge to get a believable perspective. It's not perfect but what sketch is? Everyone in the story lived to tell this story to family and friends. The varmint's perspective would not be my perspective.

Sick Time

Well, I thought I made it through the flu season successfully. Co-workers and general population were not getting the flu as much, and there were fewer articles in the paper about it so I was SURE I had it made. Nope. A month ago I got it. Took me out of work three days. Thought I was better so I went back a day then relapse for another day. Mainly fever. Fellow members in another journaling group I'm in (LTJ) had been having flu, too, and one of them mentioned ginger tea, so I had it on hand. Don't know if it made a difference but is tasted good when other stuff didn't. On the seventh day I just had to sketch something! A catalog laying around had this cute cover photo; "SmartPak Canine". I'd like to give credit to the photographer but the cover credits don't give credit. I'm a dog lover and 'Sarge' just reminded me of dogs in my past, and the whole pack slumber thing is too cute.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Pasture Burn Time

We got together with our neighbors and did our back pasture burn this weekend. It didn't quite go as planned, but nothing BAD happened. We raced the fire for a while, lost control for a while.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

A Good Deal

I had a heck of a time getting a replacement part for my car recently. There are a couple ways of viewing it. One way says I got a heck of a deal and the other way casts some doubt. It was a fun sketch to think out.

Childhood Home

In another group I'm in the idea came up to draw a floor plan of some home in your past. I thought of this home from my early years. It was demolished this year to make room for some health care facilities to be built soon. I plan on doing a couple more sketches of the other two homes in my youth. This was a good chance to talk with my Mom and siblings about memories.

Friday, April 18, 2008

The Battle of the Mailbox

The wife and I live 9 miles out of town in the rolling hills of eastern Kansas. We have misguided youth that have decided to wage war on mailboxes. Homeowners decide how they want to engage this battle. One can see some of the philosophy of the homeowner in their choices. For me, I'd rather buy the occasional $8 replacement mailbox than build a traffic hazard. To each his own.

To sketch this I drove around and took pictures first. Sitting in the road for live sketching didn't seem like a good choice if I want to live long. So far my work has been watercolor pencil with water brush and Pitt pen, with original layout in 3H pencil. My technical background has instilled in me a tighter style that I'd like to loosen up, at least from time to time.

It Begins

My first Post. In January this year I started sketching. Took an on-line class to get me going. After the class ended the sketching continues. There are a few journal entries already done that I'll be posting. This is my first blog of my first blog site, so this is a learning time for me. Here is an entry from a cold weekend this year when we ran out of wood for our wood burning stove (don't worry, we have a furnace, too).