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Friday, February 18, 2011

"Layer"

Ohio is actually warmer than Florida! Woo hoo!!! The heavy snow has mostly melted, except for dirty mountains left over from plows in parking lots. Funny how that never gets shown on greeting cards. I took the opportunity to work off some of my winter confinement by raking the leaves I neglected last fall. I only got as far as the first big maple tree, but I'm feeling a sense of accomplishment.

I suppose I could act superior and say I was allowing the leaf compost to nourish the yard, but it isn't true. I just plain didn't feel like doing it last year. I spent last summer and fall fixing my house after a plumbing disaster, and then got blinded with migraines that seemed to go on forever. I can only do so much.

But raking leaves on a warm winter day feels like a blessing instead of labor. Seeing actual green weeds looks like a blessing too. Yeah, I know, they're going to get out of hand before the snow really melts once and for all, but at this moment even weeds are welcome if they're green. Maybe my deer will eat them instead of my apple trees? I had a vivid fantasy about eating the deer when I was surveying the damage. One way or another, I want to eat apples!

"Layer" made me think of M.C. Escher (b. June 17, 1898 -- d. March 27, 1972), a Dutch artist who liked playing with reality. I admire the way he made waterfalls and steps that led to their sources, and birds that turned into lizards, or maybe lizards into birds, and spheres that can be clear, opaque, or reflective. I can admire the way his mind worked, but I have to admit I've never managed to get a lizard into a bird in any kind of believable way. I can however simultaneously look through and at water. We all have to work within our limitations. Just imagine what Escher could've done with computers!

I started the snowflake with something else in mind, but what the heck. It's a study of layers in PhotoShop, and makes me feel like the seasons are moving in the right direction. I'm tired of trying to think nice thoughts about people in the Southern Hemisphere soaking up the sun.
I wasn't that excited by my first effort, so created another color scheme in the hope I'd like that better. In the end, I decided they make a better pair than either individually -- but then again, maybe I've just been looking at this too long? I'd rather go outside and enjoy 54F degrees! In Cleveland, that's swimsuit weather! Yay!!!

36 comments:

  1. There are some great "layers" in your post Linda and I'm glad you are also able to peel some off whilst you sweep the yard! Great snowflakes you layered too! There are signs of spring here too, such a welcome after the harsh winter. I hope the sun shines for you this weekend.
    Jane x

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  2. Very intricate and cool posts!

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  3. I am continuously impressed with your art Linda. Together with your candid sensibilities, they make a wonderful post... and valuable clues to the person called you. :o)

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  4. What a cool concept! A snowflake made of foliage! These are really beautiful and it's a very cool mental sensation trying to reconcile the sense of frosty winter with summer leaves and berries. And I love that Escher drawing with the fish!

    Hahahahaha, eat the deer.... ! Enjoy the early taste of spring!

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  5. As always your work —images and words— is a pleasure! And I'm with you on the snow...we in Boston were in the 60s yesterday and those mounds of dirty snow still don't seem to move...but this AM the sun felt spring-ish, hopeful. Thanks for the wonderful blog!

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  6. Thanks everybody! You are all so kind :) Ohio is back to winter temperatures, but the sky has some blue in it. I'll count that as life is still good! I hope everyone has an excellent weekend!!!

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  7. Another brilliant post for this weeks theme.

    Have a nice weekend, Linda!

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  8. Lovely! I admire your work and your photoshop skills!

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  9. what a really great post, linda! lovely lovely thoughts! "-) and one of my fav escher pieces, too!

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  10. Thanks! I seem to be in more of a PhotoShop kind of mind lately than picking up a paintbrush. I go in phases. Glad to share Escher this week too. I'll try to remember to post more artists I like in the future.

    Thanks for the follow Reflections!!

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  11. That's a fun idea. Combining a snowflake and leaves. Sneaves!

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  12. Or Fleaves? Well, I like them both. The shading in the top one gives it a 3-D feel - very layerly!

    And M.C. Escher, I've always thought of him as an inventor, moreso than as an artist. But maybe the two are interchangeable. Glad you're enjoying some nice weather!

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  13. You're both too funny :)

    Abby, I always thought of Escher as more of a thinker than an artist too, but however we want to look at him, he has been pretty inspiring to other artists.

    The nice weather is over. The world is white again!

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  14. I think YOU are able to make pretty greetings cards with dirty mountains left over from plows in parking lots. ;-)
    Paula

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  15. You're too kind Paula. Almost makes me want to try :)

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  16. Hey Linda, sorry to be late to the party? I have been sitting on the beach, soaking up the sun, there is salt in my hair, sand in my ears :)

    It's really hard to believe that you are on another frosted world. I will look up into the sky tonight and wave !

    Thes patterns - what an inspired choice, to overlay the snowflakes with leaves - or vice vers. The two patterns work so well with each other. I think they sing with each other :)

    thanks for the escher pic, the one with the fish is my favourite I think. Oh escehr with a computer.... scary thought :)

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  17. Andrew, I was thinking of you specifically when I commented on people living in sunshine :) I don't know how to surf anyway. We don't really do it on Lake Erie. I've done windsurfing though. I'll wave at the sky to you too, but now I don't know if that means I should wave in the morning? Is everything backwards on the other side of the world? Gotta love the internet. Makes our world smaller, or maybe bigger because we get to talk to so many more people than before!

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  18. You are what we call a real artist. Such a joy just to view your work.

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  19. Your color choices are perfect for emphasizing each layer, they don't get in the way, rather the colors pull you through correctly. nice work.
    Enjoy your sunshine... ~~raining here in California, (but we're not allowed to complain much)

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  20. Thanks so much! And Richard, no, you're not allowed to complain about weather in CA! Well, maybe about earthquakes or fires or something, but not for rain :)

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  21. Hey Linda! Maybe you just came up with a new line of Christmas cards, complete with dirty mountains of snow. :o) Yes, I remember that plumbing disaster... I felt so bad for you... glad it's behind you. Great post. Love your layers and I am a big Escher fan Myself. I have that self portrait print hanging in my studio. Enjoy the warmth, raking and the puddles:o)

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  22. Thanks Jack! You never know, I could sell the dirty snow cards to Hallmark or something :) I found out there's an Escher exhibit at a nearby museum. Woo hoo!

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  23. What a wonderful take on 'layer'. Beautiful.

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  24. Lovely layers! The snowflakes actually remind me of the 3-D cut-out cards we made back in primary. It's amazing what you can do with a computer these days... And the fish-leaves-reflection piece does still have that Escher-like quality, even without the interlocking, morphing pieces.

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  25. Thanks Euterpe! I've actually been thinking about doing cut out somethings lately. Maybe I'll work on that idea soon.

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  26. Linda, these "seasonal snowflakes" are gorgeous! I love how the first one is the snow on top of the unraked fall leaves, and the second one is wintery with the promise of spring. Here in Northern California, we've had an unseasonably sunny and warm February (usually rains all month) and now it's cold and they're actually forecasting a chance of snow here in San Jose for the first time in 76 years...crazy!

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  27. Thanks Sarah! I think some people in CA actually like the idea of snow because they never get it. Time for them to feel the pain with the rest of us! LOL Okay, actually you have my sympathies.

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  28. Wonderful concept Sarah...your snowflakes are beautifully illustrated!

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  29. Je découvre un très joli blog... avec une grandeur d'esprit.
    Bisous

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