Truro Art Residency: Day 10 (Wed)


This morning I wasn’t feeling great and I just woke up feeling like today just wasn’t going to be my day, I don’t really know why and I probably couldn’t articulate how I felt that way. Feeling this way, I wanted to avoid running into anything that would really make my day crazy, so I gave myself a long, slow morning to relax from the comfort of my bedroom. I finished up the two days of blog posts that were late, and updated my website and a few other things, so the morning was still productive, just not in the active painting sort of way. I aimed to start on a small canvas this evening, after I finished up my encaustic class. 

I made myself a small lunch and headed off to the last encaustic class that I would be taking from Cherie during my residency. I gathered up my encaustic supplies and arrived a few minutes early to set up. The other students arrived and class started. Cherie went over a few techniques for doing more involved photo transfers and charcoal transfers. I really connected with the charcoal and graphite transfers so I ended up incorporating more of thos into my encaustic piece over the course of the next 3 hours. I layered and layered wax and drawings and wax. It was fun and interesting to experiment and play around with the material to get a handle on these new methods I was learning.

Towards the end of class I started another small but quick encaustic piece, playing around more with the vertical lines and movement. While today was just playing around with the materials and techniques, it’s still another step closer to my exploring what I can do with encaustic to possibly extend my exploration and celebration of rainy days. At the end of class we started cleaning up, and I needed to do just one last step with my encaustic painting before I wrapped everything up. I reached for the heat gun (it looks like a hairdryer but is about 100 degrees hotter), and as I reached for the handle, my depth perception was off and I ended up grabbing the hot muzzle of the gun, instantly kicking in my reflexes to retract my burned fingers and run quickly to run them under cool water. It all happened so fast! The very tips of my fingers and thumb on my right hand (my painting hand!) were sore in a burn kind of way. One of the ladies in class happened to have some burn treatment gel in her bag, so she gave it to me to use on my poor digits. I lathered the burn gel all on the fingertips and then put a plastic glove on over them to keep my fingertips clean and the gel in contact with the burn area. Once I got my burn all situated we resumed cleaning up (me cleaning with one hand) and did a light review of everyone’s encaustic artwork created during this class in the last 2-3 weeks. I drove myself back as soon as we ended class, finding some band aids and cleaned up my burned fingertips. My studio mate and fell artist Patty was so kind as to help me wrap up my fingertips in bandages and then I sat for a bit with my fingertips in contact with an ice pack. I tried to get some website work done in that time, but realized just how hard it is to use a track pad with my left hand (I’m right-handed).

Some time passed and I managed to one handedly get myself some dinner and sat looking out the window of the living/dining room to see the sun was starting to get into position to assum its sunset position. I decided that I needed to get out of the house and get my mind off my stupid slightly-injured fingers, so I grabbed my camera with my left hand and drove over to Corn Hill Beach, an area in Truro that I have also heard is a good place to watch the sunset. A I pulled into the empty parking lot, I realized it’s not a beach where there’s a nice overlook to watch the sunset from my car. So I got out and spied a tall hill in the corner of the lot that I imagined would have an excellent unobscured view of the sunset. I started climbing up this sandy hill, realizing that it was indee more sand than hill, and the shoes I was wearing, some black flats, we’re not cut out for sand climbing. So I just kicked off my shoes and peds and climbed the hill barefoot. It was actually a really nice sensation to have my feet sink into the sand on the way up.

THe view from the top was amazing, but the sky was looking pretty cloudy, so I wasn’t sure how the sunset would turn out, but I decided to stay and snap photos anyway, since I had already made the effort to climb this difficult sandy dune hill. What happened next with the sunset was pretty cool: the more time went on, the more the clouds shifted to allow more glowing sunset light to shine through, the cooler the photos I was able to take. In the end, it was a pretty spectacular sunset, with pink glowing orb at times, and some nice colors reflecting off of the bay water and off of the clouds.

After the sunset, I returned to campus, spent a little time talking with family via video phone and then watched an episode of something on my laptop before deciding that tonight would be a good night to get to bed early. So I turned into my bedroom early and said goodnight. Today was one day that I didn’t get to do any painting, but I also had this weird finger burn injury happen when I wasn’t planning to. By later in the night my fingertips were at least feeling a bit better. Tomorrow I’m hoping to be a bit more back to normal, to get my last painting of my goal of six paintings started, and hopefully enjoy having our open studios event tomorrow evening .