a simple painting with a pueblo in a distance, desert scenes are easy to paint. This one was on a 9 x12 canvas, ZZ was ll years old when she painted these
a desert scene is easy to paint, you need a cloud in a blue sky,sandy ground and a subject to make it interesting.
We were always looking for simple subjects ZZ could paint when she came to visit. Desert scenes were simple enough, blue sky with one cloud, sandy ground with a few patches of scrub brush. Then we needed a subject, like a yucca plant or as in this case, a group of adobe houses connected with each other to make a small pueblo. Starting with a few ‘boxes’ and adding ladders to get to the upper levels, vigas~or wooden beams~ then doors and windows. Shadows were the fun part, they made the different rooms stand out from one another. ZZ painted several of these scenes when she was around 11 years old. Some she gave away, some she sold on e-bay and others she kept. (when you paint, pretty soon you have a lot of pictures). New Mexico is rich in ancient history and these kinds of pueblos are scattered throughout the state. These that she painted were made up, no real places, just remembering those we had seen.
this is a group of carved pieces, there has been a lot of whittling going on for years, these are just the things I ended up with.
My boys like to carve and whittle. Here are a few of the things they have made. The wooden chain is carved from a single straight board, the egg started as a square block of wood, then there is a box with open center and a carved ball inside. Each of these started with a solid piece of wood.
the little hard hat is carved from bass wood, It has all the detail of a real roughneck’s steel hat.
the leather band inside cushions a blow to the head
There is also a hard hat, made exactly like the steel hats roughnecks wear on drilling rigs. It even has a leather headband inside.
the little shovel is a fine piece of art
My favorite is this spade, made from walnut with a maple handle. The shovel part is carved thin and is as smooth as silk. It is a contrast between a tool used for hard digging and an exquisite piece of art.