Thursday, April 14, 2011

Painting and other time-sinks


Attached is a photo of some panels I've gessoed in preparation for painting.  The raised one, which is a birch painting panel I just bought, is for the portrait commission that I must start.  The other two are particle boards that I wanted to have ready because I really want to get some other painting done.  The scenery has been so pretty.  I also had the idea that I might simultaneously work on another portrait on my own for additional experimentation and practice—it might help smooth my way, since I don't want to screw up the commission, and I haven't done a portrait in a looooong time.


I don't know why, but yesterday I started thinking about fishing.  I used to go pretty frequently, but I haven't been in a long time.  Now it's been five or six or seven years.  There is no way that I'd be able to go very often, but I wonder if I should try to go a few times this year?  Should I get a fishing license?


I have fond memories of combined fishing/painting trips with friends.  The combination never really worked out too well:  As long as there was a line in the water, it was hard to concentrate on painting.  I did, however, manage to get some painting done, including some good ones.


It was fun fishing for catfish that way.  I'd have a line out on the bottom with a nightcrawler, and a bell attached to the pole.  Then I'd set up my easel close by.  I could paint, and as soon as I heard the bell ring (ding-ding-ding), I'd drop my brush and run over to the pole and crouch next to it, ready to pick it up.


Usually, nothing would happen, so after a few minutes I'd walk back to my easel.  I'd pick up my brush, and then: ding-ding-ding…


A good way to spend an afternoon.


Most of my friends and family don't like fishing, but there are a few who do.  There's one in particular I used to fish with a lot; now I want to call him to see if he's been lately.


My favorite thing about fishing, by far, is the excited, tense feeling that comes right before a fish takes the hook.  I love how it feels, for instance, to be fishing on the bottom for catfish, and to see the pole jerk or bend slightly, telegraphing some unknown fish's interest.  Or watching a bobber, after a long period of stillness, suddenly begin to bounce or move.

 I find it hard to justify the time for fishing now, though, because I should be working on art.  I already have other hobbies: metal detecting, coin collecting, gardening.  I don't have enough time for those.  But I guess fishing doesn't need to be a hobby, it can just be an occasional excursion.  Hmmm.

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