Success Is a Word with a Hidden Trap

Appalachian Autumn

It’s Autumn, finally. The forest empties herself. Before there’s even a real flash of color the Buckeyes have already dropped all their leaves. They are, after all, the early birds of spring, putting out leaves before any other trees. They have made their gleaming nuts and gone to bed before anyone else. The wild cherry is done just as the black birches start to put on their   yellow dresses. Some trees are all about the party that is Fall, and others are already asleep.

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Dear Franklin Carmichael

Silvery Tangle by Franklin Carmichael

Dear Franklin Carmichael,
I admire much of your work, but there is something about this one piece that has struck me in a most particular way. It is intensely evocative for me, though I really don’t know why. I simply fall into it. I feel this buzz in the space between my heart and throat, as if a dragonfly were drying its wings there.

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Storm at Dusk

BRP Dusting #7: Storm at Dusk, by Stephanie Berry, part of her Blue Ridge Parkway Series

Dusk is approaching when I finally head up to the Parkway. The sky in the west is thickening with clouds, and strong winds push against the trees. Whole ridgelines turn a paler, flurried green as the undersides of leaves are blown about. Spruce trees stand dark and dramatic against the gray sky.

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Black Mountain Range

Triptych of the Black Mountains by Stephanie Berry, pastel on paper

For days 3, 4, and 5 I decided to do a triptych of the Black Mountain Range, as seen from the Black Mountains Overlook on the Blue Ridge Parkway. It was my first triptych, and a fun experiment. I will probably do more of these, because they present interesting challenges in consistency and perspective.

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Magic Dust Art

Work in Progress: Massie Gap, Virginia, a pastel painting by Stephanie Berry from a scene along the Appalachian Trail in Grayson Highlands, Virginia

I’ve been painting a lot. Or should I say dusting a lot, since pastels aren’t paint at all, but delicious, pure pigment with a small dash of binder. (That’s what makes them so captivating, by the way: their purity, and also that the light wraps around all those sweet little pigment particles, reflecting this way and that, creating a luminous glow.) 

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