Spring fever & winter weather

It's been almost eight months that I've been trying to find a way to use this grackle...  Recently I was walking through a parking lot and a pair of these birds confronted me, one squawking wildly.  They seemed very excited to say 'hello.'  On Tuesday, I went back to my sketchbook to draw the talkative bird.  They are everywhere in San Antonio, as prominent as the parking lot gulls in Youngstown.  In the sketches, they become symbols for the city I now call home.  

Last week at this time it was 75 degrees; this morning I woke up to an icy, gray sky and a light snow on our back porch.  I'm pretty sure most of our plants got zapped by the hard freeze last night.  My next painting is inspired by spring fever and excitement to plant our garden.  To visually & conceptually link this new painting with the other, the fence and succulents are included in the foreground.  The plant life reminds me of our wedding weekend...they were centerpieces at the rehearsal dinner and a handful of them are still thriving, almost a year later.  They are one of the few plants that I can keep alive. 
Steven's mom made the mercury jars & our families worked together to pot them for the wedding celebration
After a morning of drawing different succulents, the drawings were transferred from my sketchbook to tracing paper.  I  played around with different arrangements, layering the transparent paper until the composition felt balanced.   Next, I'll transfer the lines and begin painting the background.


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