too long of a “to do” list

100_9841 (2) flower at arb

I visited the United States National Arboretum in Washington DC last month. I went hunting for interesting flowers and found one I hadn’t at all expected — I believe it’s a cardoon.  My husband had planted cardoons in the garden one summer, and we waited all season for the flowers, a waiting that was all in vain.  Perhaps some varieties are flower-less?  Or was ours somehow not a full-fledged cardoon?  I will probably never know.  However, that was the magical summer of the black and yellow garden spider.  (Avert your eyes if you are arachnophobia, but note that she’s a beautiful spider — as spiders go ….)

spider no 1 in her web sept 6 (2)

She settled near the cardoons and you can see a bit of cardoon leaf in the left-hand side of the photo.  She was an impressive spider.  So, it was a no-flower but get-a-pretty-spider- instead-for-a-bargain kind of summer.

Fast forward to this summer when I was no longer looking for cardoons and one jumps into my path as it were.  It wasn’t in flower yet. Still this beautiful structure, the globe artichoke, was exactly what our cardoons were missing. Well, I meant to go back to the arboretum to see the flower on top.  But I forgot!

It’s a month later now.  I probably missed the flower, but I suppose I ought to return and find out if some late bloomer is available for a photo shoot. Thus the moral of the story is Make Thyself A List and keep it current.

Or you’re gonna miss out.


collecting things

DSC_1102 (2)

The sound inside the seashell tells me that life is always changing.  I remember in my youth how much I loved pictures and how I collected them.  My art collection began with postcards and posters (of the former I soon had a veritable museum in miniature).

I liked collecting things too — especially leaves and pretty rocks.  I still like collecting bits of nature to bring indoors where they can remind me of all things wild.  Only later did I begin drawing and then I brought things “inside” by putting them onto paper or canvas.  So it is that now I collect seashells that are composed of colors, sometimes made of wax crayon, sometimes composed with the pure pigment of the pastel stick, sometimes made of paint.

And in turn now I offer them for sale as posters so that I have come full circle, having begun as someone who loved the pictures that artists made to being a maker of pictures myself.  I can only hope that my pictures will inspire others as I have been inspired.

You can find the seashell above at my page on Fine Art America where it is reproducible in an interesting range of materials, wood, metal, canvas.  The image choices for this particular work are kept small so that the picture will be near to its scale in life.  Over time I hope to offer a full “seashell collection.”

You can find it here: