A Bobcat, Icicles, and Clumsiness


This weekend was quite a beautiful one – with the freezing rain and sunshine, the forest sparkled. A brief, but lovely, sight.


Though with this weekend came a visitor: a wandering bobcat. They’re not dangerous, at least not to humans…pet cats are another story. I just find them unsettling, mainly because their bark sounds exactly like a baby crying. Which is very creepy when that sound is coming from the forest at midnight.

It’s only the second time in my life that I’ve heard a bobcat, and both instances were at night (though the first was while sleeping in a tent, which was definitely more frightening). But bobcats don’t tend to stay in one place, so it may be another 8+ years before hearing another one. (And just on the news tonight, was a photo of one in someone’s backyard. Apparently February-March is a common time to spot them in residential areas, as food sources are dwindling).


In other news, while working on a landscape painting, I made the mistake of placing my palette a little too close to the edge of my painting perch….. I tried to catch it — bad idea. I ended up with cadmium red and orange, with a touch of indian red, on one hand and cadmium yellow on the other (of course, cadmiums being the expensive, and slightly toxic, colors…). It seemed like such a waste of paint, so I swirled some onto the canvas before trying to scrub it off my hands. 

Painting in Progress | Saltwater Birch Studio

It was quite a mess. I didn’t end up catching the palette either, which meant paint was all over my socks, the floor etc. My face (the only part that escaped paint-free), was caught somewhere in the middle of a laugh and a grimace. It was like dropping toast, butter side on the ground. It really couldn’t have been any worse.

Unfortunately it was not a rare occurrence, but at least I had on designated painting clothes (when clumsiness is inherited, you have to take some precautions). And through necessity have discovered that oil paint comes off wooden floors quite easily, so no harm, no foul.

Painting in Progress | Saltwater Birch Studio

Though I do wonder about all those bright white and pristine studio spaces you see floating around on Pinterest – people don’t actually work in them, right? From my clumsy point of view, where paint gets on everything from light switches to doorknobs, I can’t imagine working so neatly lasts for very long.



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