dilleenart dilleenart

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Dilleen Marsh  Artist!

Day 1038. "Go climb a tree, will ya?!! Go jump in the lake! Take a flying leap!" These are idioms that are supposed to mean: go away and stop bothering me. But, look at the actual words of these phrases. You COULD be inspired to greatness by taking a leap and FLYING, jumping into a lake and SWIMMING, or CLIMBING a tree to think. A few years ago I asked a couple of my sisters to visit an old landmark with me. As kids we had often climbed a large tree growing on the boundary of our farm. Creativity showed up early with us, lol, because we christened that big tree..."The Big Tree". Giddy with child-like enthusiasm, their adult bodies climbed "The Big Tree" again. You can see them perched in the branches of my sketch. Perhaps climbing a gigantic tree as children helped set a series of thoughts and actions in motion, contributing to the energetic and productive lives that all my siblings now live. According to Thomas Fuller, an English churchman and historian in the 1600s: "One that would have the fruit must climb the tree." Maybe "The Big Tree" was...practice.

#perspective #bigtrees #climbingtrees #energetic #productive #fruitful #practice #idioms #nostalgia #childhood #growinguponafarm #artist #fineartist #insight #art #illustrator #storyteller #sketchoftheday #landscape #shadows

Day 1037. There's a rule-of-thumb to only use pure black (if you really must) when you paint a HOLE in something. Attracted to old buildings as artistic design, I've painted my share of black holes. Now I mix other splendid colors to get dark spaces of emptiness. Holes are not always empty. Seeing a lighted window in a dark landscape can be a cheery reminder that there is life going on inside: snacks in the fridge, favorite TV shows playing on a screen, comfy couches lining walls. H.W. Beecher observed, "Our gifts and attainments are not only to be light and warmth in our own dwellings, but are also to shine through the windows into the dark night, to guide and cheer bewildered travelers on the road." So, also, is an empty window in a well-used wall a reminder that life once swarmed through, rather than just around the outside of, a dwelling now at rest. An empty, open window is a gift to a composition. Could there be a colorful ghost to cheer us on, even in the blackness of ink?

#composition #blackholes #oldbuildings #openwindows #darkspaces #cactus #gifts #travelingthrough #black #color #artist #insight #art #fineartist #illustrator
#penandink #perspective #sketchoftheday #storyteller

Day 1036. Somewhere, at the corner of rural byways on the western side of the United States, stands this still-possibly-useable communication relic. When I left the farm to go away to college, the only way I could hear the voices of my family was to gather up quarters, dimes, and nickels and go outside my dormitory building to the nearby telephone booth. Politely waiting in line with other homesick students, the money never seemed to go far enough. "Okay, quick, let me say hi to...and is Dad there?" Just touching bases, it was in letters that I poured out my prose. When I moved to Califonia to seek my fortune, it was from 'phone' booth to 'phone' booth, hoping for an intact Yellow Pages with a complete address, that I drove to find my way around the big city. (I just want to say: "How rude!" to all those who tore-out-the-yellow-pages-with-addresses-they-needed-rather-than-writing-them-down-so-others-could-find-their-way, whew, #longtimecomingvent.) Phone Booths are becoming Wireless Stations and may someday be converted into Charging Points for electric cars. Me and Superman might have something in common: a nostalgic appreciation for what once was.

#telephonebooth #remembering #phonebooth #stayingintouch #nostalgia #shadows #shadowsofthepast #corners #country #artist #art #fineartist #illustrator #storyteller #sketchoftheday #landscape #penandink #progress #bythesideoftheroad

Day 1035. Tiny farmstead--grand stand of trees--monumental cloud formation...sometimes it takes zooming out to the end of the field to get the whole picture. Decades ago I met a young mother who told me she would not buy a single can of tuna fish. "You don't like tuna?" I asked. "No, I like it, but the way tuna is caught kills dolphins. I want the fishing industry to change how they catch tuna," she said. "And you, not buying a can of tuna, are gonna change that?!" said I, who had been raised on tuna fish, Miracle Whip, iceberg lettuce, homemade white bread sandwiches, incredulously. "Well, it has to start somewhere," she said with enough passion to make me squirm. Showing wisdom beyond her years, I am thinking of that long ago conversation as I take a drink of water from my now refillable stainless steel water bottle. I wonder how many plastic water bottles I have stopped buying since I came to an understanding like hers? Maybe we've made a difference. "The greatest results in life are usually attained by simple means and the exercise of ordinary qualities. These may for the most part be summed in these two--common sense and perseverance." (Owen Feltham, English author, 1600s). #earthday2018 #endplasticpollution #commonsense #perseverence #tuna #dolphins #plastic #refillable #recycle #reuse #simplemeans #greatresults #takingastand #lovingtheearth #artist #art #fineartist #illustrator #storyteller #sketchoftheday #artist #fineartist #insight #seeingthewholepicture

"Rest Easy...Angels Have Your Back". This 18x24 inch oil painting was derived from my Day 868 sketch. Saw the essence of this scene while standing in 'The Cathedral on 110th (St. John the Divine)', New York City. I am honored to have it included in the 94th Annual Spring Salon in Springville, Utah. Exhibition runs April 25 through July 7, 2018.
#compassion #hope #peace #tolerance #inclusion #diversity #slumber #rest #worship #essence #comfort #struggle #oilpainting #figures #illustrator #storyteller #sketchoftheday #artist #fineartist #insight #art

Day 1034. Leonardo da Vinci wrote little fables for himself in the margins of his notes. One was about "a stone of a good size" that lay in a pleasant grove above a road. RESTLESS to "live in the company of [his] fellow stones" lying in the passage below, the rock rolled down to join them. After a while it "began to suffer continual distress", what with wagon wheels, iron-shod horses, and the feet of travelers. "At times it raised itself up a little, all covered with mud or animal dung and in vain looked back at the place it had left behind, a place of solitary and tranquil peace." Whenever I go for a walk in the neighborhood and see this tree and rock in the late afternoon sun, they seem like comfortable companions, content to pass the time together in their quiet place. "A restless mind, like a rolling stone, gathers nothing but dirt and mire. Little or no good will cleave to it; and it is sure to leave peace and quietness behind it." (John Balguy, English Divine, 1700s) I am certainly glad THIS satisfied ROCK did not ROLL.

#quietness #contentment #peace #satisfaction #enduring #companionship #stone #rock #leonardodavinci #fables #illustrator #fineartist #storyteller #sketchoftheday #artist #landscape #penandink #coloredpencil #takingawalk

Day 1033. To some, seeing a crane indicates INQUISITIVENESS. My little niece must have had the spirit of these big birds on her brain. Lined up with her brother and cousin on Grandma's yarn-tied quilt to pose in prayer for me for an illustration assignment, curiosity overcame her. "Curiosity in children is but an appetite for knowledge," said John Locke, an English philosopher of the 1600s. As a character in Aesop's Fables, the crane is also portrayed as a problem-solver and a wise teacher. For example: A Peacock, puffed up with vanity, met a Crane one day, and to impress him spread his gorgeous tail. "Look!" said the Peacock, "I am dressed in all the glory of the rainbow, while your feathers are gray as dust!" The Crane spread his broad wings and flew up toward the sun. "Follow me if you can," he said. But the Peacock stood where he was among the birds of the barnyard, while the Crane soared in freedom far up into the sky. Lesson taught. (Some even believe that the powerful wings of the Crane are able to carry people to higher levels of spiritual enlightenment.) In the curious search for knowledge, it's probably not a bad idea while opening your mind, to also open an eye and SEE where you are.

#inquisitive #enlightenment #knowledge #openyoureyes #curiosity #learninglessons #searching #aesop #cranes #soaring #wisdom #problemsolving #illustrator #fineartist #storyteller #sketchoftheday #ink

Day 1032. What if..."and then the water was gone?" This old homestead was fortunate to have been established by a spring. Even then the original owners probably made choices like: "let's set up a barrel to catch rain" rather than "let's buy a lawnmower on the next trip into town"! Well water, back in the day, was pumped for Monday's washing, but the used water then watered flowers and scrubbed floors. How amazing today that we are able to turn on a tap and get clean water...for how long? Over 2 billion people live without safe drinking water at home. Droughts, population growth, pollution, and wasteful water use may be doling out more water than a river or spring can give. How to do the same or more with less water? "Nature does not capriciously scatter her secrets as golden gifts to lazy pets and luxurious darlings, but imposes tasks when she presents opportunities, and uplifts [them] whom she would inform. The apple that she drops at the feet of Newton is but a coy invitation to follow her to the stars." (Edwin Percy Whipple, American essayist, 1800s) Sometimes coy invitations can become urgent necessities.

#worldwaterday2018 #water #intelligence #informedchoices #wisdom #foresight #opportunities #nature #desertliving #pipesprings #illustrator #fineartist #storyteller #sketchoftheday #artist #fences #rainbarrel #penandink #coloredpencil #oldhomestead

Day 1031. I have traveled this road before, instinctively stopping and photographing this scene during different seasons of the year. Day 834 of my sketches was autumnal and inspired some thoughts about slowing down to-take-it-all-in. Sketch 918 had a hint of spring and conjured thoughts about diversity. Now it is the end of winter and still exposed branches are soft grays. I am seeing different things...and I am seeing differently. Artistic progress? Emerson said, "All our progress is an unfolding, like the vegetable bud. You have first an instinct, then an opinion, then a knowledge, as the plant has root, bud, and fruit. Trust the instinct to the end, though you can render no reason." I will probably pull off to the side of the road again at this spot, following an instinct. Wonder what vegetable (or different idea) I will be munching on then?

#progress #seeingdifferently #instinct #knowledge #growth #landscape #winter #opinions #traveling #ideas #seasons #illustrator #storyteller #sketchoftheday #artist #fineartist #trees #zionnationalpark

Day 1030. "To sleep, perchance to dream: ay there's the rub..." (Hamlet Act III, Scene 1). Do you think Shakespeare struggled to get a good night's sleep?!! Indeed, GETTING to sleep and STAYING asleep requires an absence of worries, babies to feed, cats (or dogs) jumping on the bed, going over and over what you might have said, noises in the night, a body demanding service, working out your next great idea...when you should be sleeping! Then there are those fabulous 'flights of fancy' we call dreams that most occur during DEEP sleep. Without them we could suffer anxiety or depression, among other ills. Sleeping WELL can be a full time job, unless, like this boy, sleep comes...easily. While a raucous family party swarmed around him, he retired to a nearby couch and fell elegantly into slumber. Experts say a SOUND and PEACEFUL sleep can improve our creativity, concentration, and memory. "PEACE, dear nurse of arts, plenties, and joyful birth." (Also by Shakespeare, obviously well refreshed from a good night's sleep.) Night has arrived. Time to tackle that "shut-eye" thing again. Young Hamlet...sleep on.

#sleep #peace #peacefulsleep #youth #shakespeare #dreaming #dreams #creativepower #children #flightsoffancy #concentration #memory #art #artist #capturingamoment #illustrator #storyteller #sketchoftheday #portrait #fineartist #hamlet #health #struggle

Day 1029. "You'd better watch out," said my mother. "If you keep making that face, it will get stuck there." (I'm sure it was my, "do I HAVE to do the dishes" face.) Perhaps we do become what we do again and again and again. It's not difficult to see which direction the wind continuously blew against this canyon tree. However, there are 'winds of change', forces that have the power to alter things. I knew a woman who left her husband and three small children one day and did not return for a long time. The heart-broken grandmother ended up gathering those three into her already struggling household of nine. A cold east wind was blowing the branches that day. Years and hard adventures later the mother came back, reconnected with her children and ever after tenderly took care of the aging grandmother, her own mother. I visited this woman in her declining years. Her face was...angelic. There was a kind glow about her. Too late for this tree, but, since my face may get stuck in an expression, I have practiced smiling through life...even while doing the dishes.

#windsofchange #redemption #angels #struggles #overcoming #tenderness #family #learning #practice #artist #illustrator #landscape #penandink #fineartist #storyteller #sketchoftheday #zionnationalpark #trees #endofwinter

Day 1028. A study in a medical journal found that LACKING a strong social network was comparable to smoking 15 cigarettes or drinking more than 6 alcoholic drinks a day; major risk factors for death. On the other hand, a STRONG social network contributes to coping with stress, learning, growing, exploring, achieving goals, and cultivating new talents. Whew! Good thing I've got a 'net'. The other day a client asked me to do a watercolor. What?!! I have carefully avoided temperamental watercolor with pencil, ink, pastel, and oil. I said I would do my best. A great friend who is more experienced in watercolor stopped by. "Would you take a look at my piece and give me some pointers?" She did. I tweaked. The client was thrilled. Heart health good for another day. "A FRIEND should be one in whose understanding and virtue we can equally confide, and whose opinion we can value at once for its justness and its sincerity. He who has made the acquisition of a judicious and sympathizing friend, may be said to have doubled his mental resources." (Robert Hall, English clergy, 1700s) It's good to have a buddy close by to help put out the 'fires' that come.

#friends #socialnetwork #health #opinion #justness #friend #buddies #putoutfires #art #watercolor #illustrator #storyteller #sketchoftheday #artist #fineartist #trees #firehydrant #shadows #companionship

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