North Carolina Art Residency: Day 11 (Thur)

I slept in just a little bit until 8:30pm because I stayed up so late last night with the productivity push. I went directly to the studio this morning to check on last night’s painting drip since initiating the “rain” effect to the green-blue paintings. I appeared that recording the time-lapse video of the drips was still in action when I arrived, which is good. I had worried that the video would stop in the middle of the night due to lack of data storage.


I picked up my little fan brush and went to work on adjusting and responding to the night’s drips of the painting. Fortunately, I was pretty pleased with the overall result of the drips. It took me the majority of the morning to finish up the first phase of touching up the drips since the painting was still so actively dripping.
For lunch I walked to the general store on campus and got a chicken salad sandwich from the Pony Express deli there. The sandwich was very good. Then I returned to my studio and began the process of touching up the side edges of the previous two paintings, mixing the simple palette of blues needed for the edges of the blue mountain triptych.

After touching up the edges of the blue painting, I realized that I just might have enough time to start a smaller painting in the rest of this afternoon and evening. Tomorrow (Friday) is my last full day here at this art residency before we start our road trip back to Rhode Island early on Saturday morning, so I’ll have to use tomorrow for packing and cleaning. Feeling ambitious to do this last push to achieve my modified goal of working on 4 paintings, I started a new 20 x 20 inch canvas on the big easel. I took my paintbrush and toned the whole canvas a very light lilac color, and then I outlined an area of composition in green that I envisioned would be a collection of different pink, purple, and white flowering spring bushes and trees.

Now that I had a new canvas started, I had to make sure that I finished it! I used the rest of the afternoon and early evening to fill in as many of the purple, pink, white and green paint dots and daubs that I could. At one point in the afternoon, I took break from my frantic painting pace and took a break to go to the coffee bar in the general store. I asked the staff if they could make an affogato, a scoop or two of ice cream with a shot or two of hot espresso poured over the ice cream, kind of like an ice cream float. “Affogato” literally means “drowned” in the Italian language, as the cold ice cream is drowned by the hot espresso The combination of cold and hot coffee tastes pretty good. They gladly obliged me in making this caffeinated concoction, even though it’s on the main menu.

With my delectable affogato in hand, I returned to the studio to continue vigorous painting work on the fourth and final painting that I’d get to work on during my stay at this art residency. I put more dots and daubs on the painting, and then intermittently went back to the green-blue painting from last night to touch up some of the drips that had travelled down the canvas since I last touched it up this morning. Around 4:30pm Tammy and I drove to Forest City to return my rental car to the rental agency, then she gave me a ride back to the studio.

Eventually afternoon turned to dusk turned to sunset turned to night and the moon started to peak out from the clouds. I had remembered that Thursday nights were the pasta bar special at Campagna, the Italian restaurant on campus, so I wrapped up the latest phase of painting in order to go to dinner. I knew that my husband would be arriving on campus sometime later tonight after having dinner with friends about an hour away, which would conclude his individual epic road trip. When I walked in the chef and waitstaff remembered me from last week’s pasta bar while friendly as ever. After my server brought over the amazing Rosemary bread and sweet tomato jam, the server operating the actual pasta bar told me she put in a special order of pesto just for me, since we had talked about my love for pesto last week, which I thought was really thoughtful. The regular sauces offered at tonight’s pasta bar were a white alfredo sauce and a red marinara sauce. When I saw the line went down, I went up and the chef glad made my special plate of pasta and veggies. Sitting down in the outdoor patio area, I enjoyed my dinner.  I had to ask for a to-go box for half of the pasta so I can save some to reheat for dinner tomorrow. The waitress reminded me that dessert came automatically with the pasta bar, so I enjoyed trying their version of tiramisu.

At the end of dinner when the server brought me the check, I reached for the credit card that I’ve been using to track expenses from this trip, and it wasn’t there. Fortunately I still had one of my debit cards on me, so I wasn’t stuck without a method of paying the fine staff of this establishment. I went back to the studio and dumped out my purse, wondering if this credit card might’ve been lost somewhere within the pockets and massive contents of the purse. But it wasn’t there. I retraced the places of my day to try to remember the last place I used my credit card. I had driven my rental car to return it, and before that I had used it at the gas pump at Ingles grocery store to fill up the tank before I returned it to Enterprise. I texted Tammy to ask her if maybe the card had slipped out of my shorts pocket and onto the floor of her truck or between the seats. She checked her truck, but she didn’t find anything.

just a few photos of the adorable Scout & Jasper dogs to lighten up these paragraphs

Since I had already returned my car, I thought maybe the card might’ve slipped out of my pocket between the seats of the rental car, but by this time it was already long past the time that the rental car agency was still open. I planned to call them first thing in the morning to ask them if they would have found anything. Then, on a last whim, I found them number for Ingles and called them to ask if the gas attendant or anyone might have found my credit card, giving a description and and everything. The customer service lady called the gas attendant and it turned out that they found it and were holding it in a safe location until it could be claimed and retrieved. I quickly called my husband and asked him to pick up the credit card at that Ingles on his drive to Tryon tonight. He agreed to do it, and he called me later letting me know that he had successfully retrieved the lost credit card.

I like the way the late afternoon sun shines on the painting here

I continued to paint the smaller painting, adding more and more layers of spring-colored paint daubs and dashes. My husband arrived to the studio around 10:30pm, and he kept me company in the studio while I worked on finishing the painting. It was great to see hi again in person, since we had each be doing our separate travel thing for just about 2 weeks. Ever thinking as my art studio social media manager, he recorded videos and photos of me working in the studio that I could post to my Rachel BRask Artworks Instagram page.


The clouds were intense today, made it look like it would rain any minute

In a couple hours, I finished applying all the dots, and then debated with whether to apply the rainy drip technique tonight and going to sleep a little later, or apply it in the morning. After conferring with him, we both agreed it’s better to just “rain” it tonight so that it’ll have the time overnight to start its dripping, so that it has hopefully mostly dripped before we have to pack away my painting supplies tomorrow afternoon. After a short bit used a thick bristle brush and Stand oil to smear the paint daubs vertically from top to bottom, running the pinks, purples, whites and blues together.

Once we finished that, I hung up my paint apron and we went back to the house for the night, anticipating that tomorrow would be our last day here, spent mostly packing. I’d still make the time in the morning to check on and touch up the drips on this last painting, though. By the time I got to sleep it was around 1am.