Friday, November 6, 2009

House Where No One Lives (oil on canvas, 2009)

(Private Collection)
This old house is on the Fletcher Road in Monticello, just past the Wilkins Road and right before the border crossing into Canada. When I was kid, there was a path at the end of my street, which would take you through a big field and then about 3/4 through the woods where it came out on Stow road by an old, empty house behind trees like this. The kids in my neighborhood all called it the "Witchy-poo House" and we were terrified to go near it. Coming upon this building, at dusk, during the last week of October brought back a lot of memories from childhood Halloweens. I borrowed the title (slightly altered) from a Tom Waits song.

The Sentinels (oil on canvas, 2009)

I found this group of trees on a hillside in Monticello, south of the Wilkins Road, which is a dirt farming road that runs parallel to the Canadian border. I did two pastels of the subject, one on a very cold, overcast Sunday afternoon (Drawing with frozen fingers is never fun and I know that it's going to get much colder in the months to come...), and another, a couple of days later on a sunny day. I liked the feel of the first pastel drawing and tried to capture the coldest of the dim, late-October afternoon. Right behind where I was standing is a big tree with an enormous tractor tire wrapped around it. Apparently, the tree grew up right through the opening in the middle of the tire, which has probably been there more than 40 years.