Green and Growing
California is green once again! Bright yellow-green like a crayon. Or perhaps the hue is even more akin to one of my favorite paint colors called Green Gold, squeezed straight from the tube onto a white canvas. The air is so clear that I can't keep my feet on the ground and almost daily I have to pull over on the way back from the barn to stare openmouthed at this glowing landscape.
I was trying to describe this phenomenon to my mom a couple of weeks ago, the luminous brilliance that is late autumn in this corner of the world. And the best I could come up with was that the sun, skimming lower in the sky each day, is sending its rays through the new grass at a slant and lighting everything up from below. This seems so thin when compared to the real thing, but it's all I've got for now. I guess I'll just keep working on translating that visual magic into words...though I imagine it will take a lifetime if I manage to get there at all.
Speaking of my mom (and my dad and my younger brother...), Eric and I got to host Thanksgiving for my family this year! It'd been quite awhile since they'd made it out for a visit, so we spent the trip exploring Sonoma county. It's always so interesting how being with family can open a person up. I get so used to my daily routines that I lose sight of the magic that is living...but showing people around always makes me realize it again : I am so lucky for everything (and everyone!!) I have in my life.
One of the places we had to visit was the Cypress Tunnel at Point Reyes - my mom said it was her most favorite place in California. We hit the road after finishing our Thanksgiving meal and got there about fifteen minutes before sunset. It was foggier than I've ever seen it and at first we couldn't even see to the end of the lane...but as we walked, the lights in front of the old radio communications building came on and guided us forwards like the softest of lighthouse beacons through the mist.
I love this building...the symmetry, the 20's detailing - it gets me every time. The light went from grey to pink for about two minutes, just as the sun was setting, before slowly fading to the deepest blue. By the time we made it back to the car it was well and truly dark and we drove home with lungs full of ocean air and eyes imprinted with the shapes of cypress branches arching overhead.
We also had to make a trip up to the Armstrong Redwoods park. If you've ever been to see a redwood forest you'll know what what I mean when I say that there is nowhere more peaceful than the soft forest floor beneath those towering giants. I whisper the whole time I'm there and leave with a profound feeling of quiet. The endless stream of thoughts running through my head stops. I feel small and whole and grounded. Probably, this means I need to spend a little more time there. Luckily for my, my best friend is coming to visit in a few weeks and I'm sure we'll have to go up again!
One thing that always makes me laugh when we go to the redwoods is that I start out trying to photograph the immensity of the forest...but as of now there is no way I know of replicate the feeling of being beneath those ancient trees. The scale is so great that I can only ever capture the tiniest of slices - and like my description of the light through the green November grasses it falls short by a mile. So, after a spell of trying and failing to make what I see around me show up on my camera screen, I always revert to taking pictures of small plants and tiny details.
Tomorrow, I'll be getting back to work on pieces for the final shop update of 2017 (does anyone know how this year flew by so quickly?). To create my winter palette, I've got native silver, imperial jasper, Royston turquoise, and aquamarine on the bench. Lots to do in the next few weeks - but these pieces will be in the shop 12/10 at 10am Pacific time!!