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I am UmberDove.

And by that, I mean an artist.  One who hears stories in the wind, who paints because it is what her soul tells her to do, who smiths because the muse moves through her fingertips, who loves nothing more than the promise of an unexplored trail, the sound of the ocean in her ears, and scent of a serious cup of coffee.


And Now for a Post of Substance


What with all the tra-la-la-ing out to the river, gluttonizing on Autumn foliage and giggling over kitty trees I'm afraid you may think I'm going soft around the edges. I'm now here to offer the rebuttal, to convince you that yes indeed, life here in North Bend consists of far more than wooded frolics and 20 cups of tea in one day (although they both happen - really) and being slightly freaked out by squirrels who look you dead in the eye with an "I mean business" stare (also true).
I've actually been so busy, there may or may not still be cardboard boxes in my living room.

** Side Note **
I decided that today needed to be a heeled-boots-and-pink-prettiness day after I woke up, stumbled into the kitchen, opened the fridge and briefly considered eating nothing but 5-layer bean dip for breakfast. I had to nip that in the bud. Pronto.

As it is already November (rubber boots:homemade cranberry sauce:tall knit cowls), I'm stitching away, adding to the greats found here (they're better than goods) and putting secret gifts away for giving next month. Debuting over in el shoppo, for the first time ever, UMBERDOVE GIFT CERTIFICATES! Don't act like you're not excited, because I know you are! They're a positively perfect way to gift handmade love while simultaneously knowing your privileged giftee is picking out their heart's desire!

In painting news, since it's been a precious long time, I've set up my make-shift-Winter studio in the back of the house (the charmingly rustic studio building - which will be the permanent studio - located in the back, has no heat and these lithe fingers must stay limber enough to hold a brush!). I've a plethora of upcoming shows and a large stack of white canvas sparkling in the light, waiting to be created. Last week I kissed a handful of paintings on their little gessoed heads, wrapped them up with tidy labels, told them to be safe, then shipped them out to Florida for a December show (Aqua Art Miami ** whoot!).

The shelves in my studio-room are becoming jam-packed with tiny canvases, loads of 5" squares jostling shoulders as they vie for attention. Leaves and feathers tumble with tally marks and rings, bird skulls, hollow rabbits, and ghostly antlers all share space, simultaneously nodding to religious iconography and the early American surrealist movement. This place is so full of inspiration, I feel that I can hardly scribble down a single idea before ten more are crowding my head. Every time I walk the trails out back I see moss covered maples (totems), ferns pressing upward (arms lifted in praise), fallen birds (tributes to the cyclical nature of life), clouds on the horizon (all that is still hidden) and blazes of sunlight (blessing on my face). I see my lines reflected in the river currents, my words written in bare branches, my movements in the toss and flip of leaves. I often feel torn: it's hard to be inside looking out at all there is to observe, but as soon as I'm out, I only want to feel the paintbrush, solid in my grip.

The longer I sit, the more I think about this thing I do, the more certain I am that my path is steady underfoot. That's not to say it's easy; sometimes the fog rolls in thick and the rains blind me. But I know it's my path, and I must pull on my boots and walk.

Adieu my friends,
- Umber