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Dilleen Marsh  Artist!


Day 973. SNAKE: A curveball. A pitched ball that changes directions and actually undulates on its way to the plate. Experts claim it never existed, except "...in the imagination only, unless the ball be blown out of its course by the wind," said Walter Camp in his 1901 Book of College Sports.
SNAKEBIT: Unlucky. A player or team with extremely bad luck. "Since baseball was a game played by country boys who know of such things as snakes...being bitten by a snake is about as bad luck as one can have," said Phil Pepe, in a 1976 Encyclopedia of Sports Talk. When I was growing up it seemed like EVERYONE was playing baseball. I was lousy at throwing, could never get the ball from the pitcher's mound to home plate. Took a crack at batting. One late afternoon the SNAKE that never undulated was a direct hit to the side of my face. That hurt!!! And ended my "snakebit" career. Some of us were meant to wrangle snakes on the ball field---and some of us were meant to pick up a pencil and draw, lol.

#baseball #findingmyway #choices #snakebit #imagination #seeingthings #illustrator #fineartist #storyteller #sketchoftheday #lasermodemasters #stilllife #snakeeye #childhood

I know I previously posted this painting, "We Carry Our Happiness With Us", but today I received word that it had been awarded the Bold Brush Award in May's Bold Brush Online Art Competition. I am thrilled and honored! Fine Art Studio Online (or FASO) through whom I have my website (dilleenmarsh.com) and conveniently enter this far reaching online contest has been great to work with. Giving nods to them #FASORocks and the judge, Jerry Markham.
#feelingblessed #danghappy #painting #figurepainting #happiness #faso #jerrymarkham #boldbrush #illustrator #fineartist #storyteller #lasermodemasters #artist

Day 972. Far ahead, peeking up from behind a mountain range, tips of beautiful cumulus clouds could be seen. A building storm? A dramatic sky forming? Yes and yes. But not the portent of rain. Rather, the becoming-more-common storm of western wildfires. An abundance of spring rain this year has set the stage for "fine fuels" of grass. Coming into view, as we got closer, was the first dramatic plume of the coming 'fire season'. I thought of King Theoden on the eve of a great battle: "So we come to it in the end. The great battle of our time, in which many things shall pass away...foes and fires are before you..." (JRR Tolkien, The Return of the King.) As temperatures settle into record-breaking triple digit heat, ice shelves break apart, and water becomes even more scarce...the view of what lies ahead comes evermore into focus.
#climatechange #stewardship #whatsahead #consensus #science #dramaticskies #wildfires #southwest #illustrator #fineartist #storyteller #sketchoftheday #lasermodemasters

Day 971. Like spots on this tree trunk where branches used to be, a spray of holes were shot in my ASSUMPTIONS the other day. I must say, up front, that children are delightful. AND they often require a matching level of energy when they are around. Energy I ASSUMED I didn't have anymore. So when I had the opportunity to spend an entire day with my 9 year old grandson, I was a little anxious. There was fort-building, basketball, tag, football, storybook reading (whew), and exploration of an underground cellar. I ASSUMED I wouldn't get around to sketching on this precious day. Then this amazing young progeny announced he was going into the backyard to "draw". "I'll join you," I said and we sat under this tree and sketched. He used one of my pens for the first time, liking the darker lines of black ink, and I threw my ASSUMPTIONS over the fence.
#takingthetime #happytrees #sidebyside #children #keepingup #youngartist #illustrator #fineartist #storyteller #sketchoftheday #lasermodemasters

Day 970. There's mystery attached to a path that wiggles away from the main road. Curiosity often points toes, moves legs, and even energizes fingers in the direction of adventure. These days I find myself following trails of data on the internet. The other day I looked up from trawling links, surprised at the time spent wandering. With such a diversity of roads to walk down, so much information to wade through...I felt guilty for a moment or two. Things to do. Places to go, of course. But schedules, goals, and intentions aside, I like this little quote from a man who seemed to fit in a lot of side rambling: "EXPLORE. DREAM. DISCOVER." I'll just stretch the day a bit and be content with my wanderings. #enlightenment #paths #journeys #exploration #contentment #mystery #curiosity #landscape #illustrator #fineartist #storyteller #sketchoftheday #lasermodemasters

Day 969. There's Winnie-the-Pooh and then there's THIS big fella (on the other side of zoo glass). They're BOTH bears. But with one I would be content to share a walk to Piglet's house, while the other brings to mind: FEAR. We had a dog named "Socks", on our farm when I was young, that would snuggle next to me on the haystack while I read a book. Pleasant memory. Then I ran into Dobermans one night that left some scars and an unrealistic fear of dogs for many years. I REALLY enjoy the utility and wonder of apps on my phone...until I tap the WRONG command. (Like I did just a few minutes ago, aargh.) FEAR wells up and I must remember: "Fear is implanted in us as a preservative from evil; but its duty, like that of other passions, is not to overbear reason, but to assist it. It should not be suffered to tyrannize in the imagination, to raise phantoms of horror, or to beset life with supernumerary distresses." (Samuel Johnson, English author, 1700s) Just need to breathe deep and RETRIEVE that data. #fearlessness #courage #facingourfears #techliteracy #becalm #bears #dogs #illustrator #fineartist #storyteller #sketchoftheday #lasermodemasters

Day 968. This sketch started out primarily as a focus on dark and light patterns. But the longer I looked at this belly-dancer's gesture, the more aware I became of my own body's stiffness. The season of yardwork and outside house maintenance is in full swing: repairing walls, insulating outside ducting, pulling weeds, planting, raking, shoveling, carrying tools, pushing wheelbarrows. I've been bending over, squatting down, and climbing up. Even though I'm not looking to flex sideways as this practiced performer, there is magic in moving and doing the hard things that need to be done. "Difficulties strengthen the mind, as labor does the body." (Seneca, Roman philosopher, 4BC-65AD) So, back to the stiffness...I got up from the drawing table and exercised a bit. Feel much better. Thank you, lovely lady! Now on to the next project and some of that 'mind' strengthening.

#doingwhatneedstobedone #exercise #keepmoving #strength #bellydancing #figuredrawing #inspired #patterns #illustrator #fineartist #storyteller #sketchoftheday #lasermodemasters

Day 967. Five baby quail scuttled into an open door and one crouched by a patio flower pot. All six were running for cover. Unfortunately they had run into an astonished den of cats. Tender hearted humans stepped in to rescue the young 'uns and returned five to their fretful parents. But this little guy had scrunched into a corner and wasn't discovered until hours later...after the quail family had moved on. What to do?! Right out of the egg, quail chicks can run almost as fast as their parents and this one hopped out of its elegant 'singing bowl' refuge and fled under rocks and cactus. It's a rough world out there. Survival is a tough thing to go-it-alone. I worried about that little lonely guy/gal through the night. Next morning, it put a smile on my face to spot the quail parents back in our yard, slowly searching the grounds. In the grand schemes of this world, I hope there was a small, but happy reunion. "...let one cultivate a boundless love towards all beings." --Buddha.
#family #love #compassion #civility #kindness #illustrator #fineartist #storyteller #hopeful #sketchoftheday #lasermodemasters

Day 966. A group of children were given seeds to plant. The rules were to provide: fresh air, clean water, bright sunshine, good soil, and conscious attention. "You will have to be patient," they were told. "Some things take time." Weeks later they reported back. Two had sprouting plants. One said, "my sister overwatered it, I think it is dead." Another, with chagrin, confessed, "I put it in the garage and forgot about it." The rest of the children were silent and stared like deer-in-the-headlights. Though graceful in death, with arms stretched to the cosmos, this tree reminds me that the decisions we make have consequences. "Better it is to...consider what will be the end of a thing, than what is the beginning of it; for what promises fair at first, may prove ill, and what seems at first a disadvantage, may prove very advantageous." (William V. Wells, American author, 1800s.) With only this earth to consider, maybe taking care of it is not child's play. #earth #consider #parisaccord #stewardship #environmentalscience #patience #harmony #beauty #consequence #illustrator #fineartist #storyteller #sketchoftheday #lasermodemasters

Day 965. Surprised at where some of my travels through life have taken me, I never intended to end up in the desert, and least of all, to grow quite fond of it. A knowledgeable artist friend of mine once pulled some leaves off a desert chaparral (also known as greasewood or creosote bushes), crushed them in her hands, and let me take a whiff. "That smells like rain!" I said. We have a bush in the yard and I often 'crush and whiff' for that most delightful smell. In the escalating heat of summer or the jarring journeys at hand, perhaps taking a moment to focus on those 'little things' can refresh us along the way: "Sagebrush ain't so pretty?/Well, all eyes don't see the same/Have you ever seen the moonlight turn it to a silvery flame?/An' that greasewood thicket yonder/Well, it smells jest awful sweet/When the night wind has been shakin' it/For its smell is hard to beat." (From "Mornin' in the Desert", classic cowboy poetry, unknown author, written on the door of an old cabin in the desert.) #littlethings #desertdelights #journeys #comfort #cowboypoetry #creosotebush #rain #illustrator #fineartist #storyteller #sketchoftheday #lasermodemasters #stilllife #cowboyboots #lifeisgood #thunderbirdfoundation

Day 964. There was great excitement the other night at our house. A Banded Gecko came to visit! He/she was so adorable that the humans gushed while the several cats that live here cautiously watched the hubbub. The little guy/gal was put in a glass jar for removal and protection. 'Frankie', a ginger, broke rank with the watchers and swatted the glass. Looking at my photos of the moment later, I was amazed at the ratio in size between predator and prey. "If you want to know what a man's like, take a good look at how he treats his inferiors, not his equals," said Sirius Black in 'The Goblet of Fire' by J.K.Rowling. Or consider: "The poorest man in his employ could go to him and be sure of considerate treatment. It has been said that the surest criterion of the character of an individual is the way in which he treats his inferiors." (From a 1913 published profile on Leland Stanford, founder of Stanford University.) The inferior-in-size gecko was safely returned to its natural habitat...a good distance from our confused cats. #compassion #civility #heartmatters #natureswonders #geckos #cats #conduct #connectivity #illustrator #fineartist #storyteller #sketchoftheday #lasermodemasters

Day 963. Every time I walk this particular trail, I am compelled to stop at this modest waterfall to stare at water answering the call of gravity. What is it about the movement of water that often becomes the centerpiece of a composition? Interestingly, the idiom, 'making waves' means to stand out, demonstrating individuality and uniqueness. The waterfall certainly does that. But consider that the backdrop of a sculptural desert is ALSO 'making waves'...albeit, stationary ones...and without that contrast, well, perhaps uniqueness cannot exist alone. "We cannot live only for ourselves. A thousand fibers connect us with our fellow-men; and along those fibers, as sympathetic threads, our actions run as causes, and they come back to us as effects." (Henry Melville, English statesman, 1700s.) #connectivity #makingwaves #unique #humanity #peacefulcoexistence #influence #illustrator #fineartist #storyteller #sketchoftheday #lasermodemasters

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