9.21.2011

Plein Air

Late one Saturday afternoon we went with dear friends to the Peaks of Otter. I've blogged about my love of this place before and this visit was no less perfect. There's a lot going on there this time of year so if you haven't been yet, autumn is a great time, especially when the leaves show their warm colors on the mountain. There's a Harvestfest at the Peaks this weekend and there will be all kinds of Appalachian goodness like needle craft and dulcimer demonstrations, old time music.  We went for art day to see the plein air (French for open air) painters and their work, to walk around the water, and to picnic. For someone who loves to be outside with my toes in the grass, I'm sad to write that I'm inside way too much. Nature is such good medicine too and I need to remember that and try to get a good dose daily.

It was a joy and inspiration to watch the painters in action. I only got a few names as most were so focused on their work that I didn't want to interrupt to inquire. We did get to speak a moment with super-nice Janet Wimmer (first image). We loved her work so much and I was thrilled to see she has a blog and you can see her wonderful work from that day there.

Olivia, Tessa, Angela, and I got drawing lessons from Ron Heath, another fantastic local artist. He was very patient with us and taught us about contour drawing and perspective. I think all four of us were sad to see the class end.

And that last image. Do you know what that is? I think it's a lumber jill. And that there's also a lumber jack. What I do know is that it's a percussion instrument played by the female trio Riddle on the Harp. They played celtic and traditional songs that night as the full moon rose up over the little ampitheater. And it was crazy the number of instruments the three played! I wish I'd thought to take a tally. Fiddle, flute, guitar, bowed psaltery, recorder, harp, bodhrans (Irish frame drums), hammered dulcimer, and mandolin and they played them all fabulously. I loved the jigs the best and was bopping in my seat.



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