Thursday, May 6, 2010

The Generosity of Nature

Admit it; if you have a Maple of any sort in your yard (or anywhere in your AREA) you have lots of these---little maple keys, seperated by the wind from the tree, spiraling downward to land with their little tails up and the seed portion ready to put a root into the ground.

Before the great weather blast the other day, in fact as it was coming in, I was out hurriedly gathering these out of the grass, one by one, watching the sky and hoping my *Bionic Hip* was made of some metal that did NOT attract electricity, especially since I was doubled over and *it* was pointed skyward......not a pretty visual. Sorry!  ;-)
So why would I run out before an electrical storm to gather these?
Because when I picked one up, it got the creative juices flowing. Then I picked up another and compared shapes and veins. Different. And then another, and the whole color was slightly different. Then I thought of all the unique things they could be used for in mixed media......the lights were on and for once, somebody was home!
Thus, in an effort to reclaim some of my drawing skills, this was produced last evening:

It is an ATC, (standard size of 2.5"x 3.5") textured black card stock with Prismacolor Pencil and a bit of white gel pen for highlights. More or less a soothing meditation from a hectic day. I can see trying a couple more of these on different grounds, maybe keeping the colored pencil medium consistent through out; not sure yet.
But the point of this is simply to be aware of what you normally walk by, and don't hesitate to collect.
I am trying each day to look differently at things provided from nature and see what they could provide when placed within the art realm!



Anonymous said...

Wow....Your whole post screams "stop & smell the roses"!!
This is a lesson we all should take to lower stress levels & ultimately make us all healthier!!
Great Post Anne!!
Love Ya'!

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey MArilyn,

It's only lower stress when you don't have a storm front chasing you!!! LOL!!!
Yes, really, I have started looking at all the little things---trying to make myself more aware of all around me and the possibilities of it.


Silke said...

Isn't it amazing? Sometimes I think if we looked just a little closer, we could see the whole universe in a seed pod, a blossom or a raindrop. I tend to vacillate between looking out at the big picture and looking deep into the little stuff.

You have amazing drawing skills - I wish I did. Don't think I have the patience or passion to learn... GORGEOUS!!

Love, Silke

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Oh Silke, you could learn---you have a good *in-house* teacher!!!
I used to do detailed work all the time, and I really prefer collage now, but still, I think I need to keep the old skills intact.
I had planned to draw last night but was dead from yard work and a change in the weather.
So I was just a slug! LOL!!


Janet Ghio said...

Anne-How nice to take something so ordinary--or seemingly ordinary--and take such inviting photographs and make such a nice drawing. It gives me a new appreciation for all those little maple pods/seeds.

Silke said...

Ha! Daniel and I teaching each other anything has never worked well... He even had to learn German from my family, and not me! :-)

Check out how your photo from this post comes up on my sidebar (blog roll) - when I saw it just now, I thought you had posted another asian collage! Really cool!!

Here's to being a slug after hard work... Love, Silke

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hi Janet!

I have to put some backstory behind yard was COVERED in these little guys! And I kept thinking, if I don't mow, I'll have a maple forest growing soon.
I really wanted a few from the tree, still together, and then I started noticing all the ones at my feet.
Basically, we miss so much daily because we just DO and don't have time to ENJOY! :)


Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Silke...

Sounds like GAry and I, oh yeah!
I'll go check your sidebar.....

The Great Slug....

marianne said...

very nice! and i see why it took you all evening! i have used these in mixed media pieces, but never would have thought of drawing one (well, i seldom think of drawing anything!)

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

hey Marianne,

I just saw all sorts of ideas with them as I was picking them up---of course, I did not write them down....I may have to do that I don't FORGET! :D


Tristan Robin Blakeman said...

just GORGEOUS drawing - period!

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Thanks Tristan!

Now I need to get my butt in gear and draw the tiny, tiny ones from my lace leafed Japanese Maple.
They are bright red and lime green!


Elena said...

OMG! I had to go back & reread because I couldn't stop laughing about the bionic hip acting like a lighting rod! Too hilarious!! And talk about synchronicity. We went to visit my brother Mon and he had tons of these on his lawn. I couldn't help myself and started collecting them. The veining was so pretty. And then I found the double ones that look like little angel wings. He said I was nuts and was I planning on planting them. I said nope; just gotta have them. So I came home and applied polymer to a set just to see if it would encapsulate them & retain the veining. Yep, so far so good. I'll try another coat and then see where it goes from there. Too cool. Thank goodness I wasn't the only nut with my butt in the air. Watch that lighting rod! (hee,hee)

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Elena,

LOL!!! Seriously, after the fact, I got wondering...would that implant attract lightening??? (should have asked the surgeon---bet he never got that question before!!!! HA!)
I have been coating oak leaves and will get the the maple keys.
When I di the seedpods from Tulip Poplars, I gently dip them in an acrylic wood finish and they do well......
It's amazing what you can preserve for art!

The Bionic Hip Chick.... ;)

audrey said...

What a sweet art card!!! There is such beauty in the simple things. how blessed you are to realize this and capture it on canvas.
♥ audrey

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

I'm going to try and work some more on these today; have a couple of irons in the fire and figure when I am resting, I can sketch.
I love finding these little *gems* Audrey---it's sort of like a treasure hunt!


Quilt Rat said...

Gorgeous........I'd say mission accomplished!!!!

BTW I have buckets and buckets of those keys too

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Thanks Jill!

BTW.....I now have buckets and buckets of ground and composted maple keys! There were so many, it looks like there was no grass back there when I mowed!
We have been lucky in that some of them take root and grow....I've transplanted a few.


Wickedly Divine Creations said...

Lovely work. You have an eye for your art ;)

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...


Thanks---sometimes I just feel like I'm wandering around making stuff, and other days, I think I've hit the nail on the head! ;)


yoborobo said...

I love to see the kids at the bus stop trying to catch these when they fall. :) It really is the little things. Okay, back to pulling my hair out and being stressed - hahahaha! xoxox Pam

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Pam,

I forgot we used to do that as a kid!
And please don't pull your hair out....I can't imagine you in a Dolly Parton wig..... :D
I have decided today is a no stress day. I may get nothing done, but will be spending all day tomorrow with DH, so I need a no stress day TODAY.


Deborah said...

Little tiny hidden did a wonderful job of capturing it. Ever so happy your lightening rod was not tested! YIKES! It would have put the curl in your hair. **blows kisses** Deb

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Yeah, I could see me checking into the ER and trying to explain WHAT got hit by lightening!!! And what I was doing to get hit......
I shouldn't even joke with my streak of luck lately.... :D


Georgina said...

We have oak trees here, but they don't put anything like that out. DH went to a house yesterday to look at a customer's oak tree...not from these parts, her or the tree!! He's a certified tree guy and told her what was wrong with the tree. She wants to save it at all costs so he recommended what the tree needed for now, but it was dying and advised her to plant another tree in another area of the yard.

Trees are very special out here since we don't naturally have any unless it's near the Rio Grande levy in the valley where you then have giant cotton wood trees...buzzards love to roost in them...big yuck if you park beneath a buzzard tree!!! LOL

Ok, 'nough about trees. Hope you have a better day today and make sure you take extra care of Gary tonight!! (nudge, nudge, wink, wink!)

Love ya,

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Georgina,

I can't imagine, having lived here so long, being someplace without a lot of trees.
We have cottonwoods here too; when they bloom, I just about go into cardiac arrest! That stuff sticks right into your lungs!!!
I can imagine parking beneath one...well....maybe not! LOL!!!


Marie S said...

I love the keys, I never knew they were called keys. Learn something old everyday!
They would make awesome bug wings too.
Spewing tea again this morning with the visual of you and the lightening.
Love and hugs.

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

(great self-satisfied grin)
Ah, Marie has to clean her monitor again! heehee!!!
I vaguely remember them being called something else too; cannot for the life of me think of it now.
Probably was standing on my head too long and all the smarts went to the Bionic Hip, or somewhere close! LOL!!!
They have lots of posibilities!


Mary Helen-Art Saves Lives said...

These were a favorite "toy" when I stayed at my grandmothers house..we would launch them off her front porch, make tiny little dolls, puppets etc. Congratulations on winning Tristan's blog give away!!! Imagine and Live in Peace, Mary Helen fernandez Stewart

Jan said...

I totally missed your post yesterday with all the beautiful photos. I swear it is still winter here. Our maples lose their helicopters in the fall/winter and they are all sprouting up now. Zillions of tiny maple trees carpeting the forest. I guess we have different ones than you do (duh) Love your ATC. They seem so absurdly small and yet it is addictive to make them.

Anna Rosa Designs said...

Hi Anne,
Oh that's funny. When I first saw the picture I thought you were going to tell me about hot chips/Frys.
Then I see you've written and drawn a beautiful pod off a tree.
Well done on the ATC

Ima Weed said...

Love this piece, it could be a lost fairy wing or an exotic fish, if I keep looking I'll see more.

Magpie's Mumblings said...

We used to call maple keys helicopters when I was a kid, which I had completely forgotten about til now. AND...just out of idle you 'see' a fish in your maple key art? To me, they look like little fish. I know - I'm weird.

kj said...

i've always loved watching them fall, anne. like little helicopters.

i find your post very sweet, very tender. you have a reverence.

so now i learn you can draw TOO. and you are wicked fun. i am a lucky duck!


Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey MAry Helen,

I remember playing with them a lot; we had two giant maples in our front yard at home.....and little keys everywhere!!! (Dad was not as FOND of them as I recall...)


Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Jan,

I miss posts too---half the time I just look at the dashboard pane, then it will give a jump and whatever I was going to check is gone....
Too many blogs, too little time! LOL!!!
I do wonder what the difference is in our maples, or if it's climate???


Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Anna,

LOL!!!! That sounds good though!
Nope, just stuff I gathered and some drawing. No food (which is what I need!)


Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Ima,

That was what I thought when I picked the first one up----all the possibilities, and I absolutely LOVE the veining in the wings.
So much to see, so small! :)


Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey M.A.

I see LOTS of things in them. Tadpoles too...they sort of have that shape.
It would be fun to paint some of them (I mean, literally paint ON them) and make different things....but I'm not quite that far gone...well....I don't think I am!


Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey KJ,

Yes, when you stand under the tree and watch them come down, it is pretty amazing. Engineered to twirl, then land with that seed down, in the grass. It looked like the yard was all the little wings---there were so many!
My Japanese maple has finally set some--the lace leaf variety and I need to check for those tinty keys, to see if they dry or not. I am thinking I have a hybrid....


Bunny said...

Your drawing is amazing, and those things I have always hated because they fall in the garden and little trees grow amoungs the flowers and I hate weeding LOL. You put a new perspective on them for me. I hate gardening LOL. You gave much food for thoughs. Hugs

freebird said...

Beautiful. Very nice drawing. Such a simple object but sometimes those make the best little pictures.

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