Waspppp Uppp!!

That is…

Wasp up there!

hornet-nest-hanging.

Actually,  it’s a hornet’s nest, a bald faced hornet.  They’re pretty talented,  look at those textures.

blog-hornet-nest-black-white.

We’ve had a busy year in our gardens for insects. The insect world is an interesting one.

I don’t quite know what to make of whatever this bee is doing.

Is he fighting with that bug? Is he eating it? Do bees eat bugs?

bee bug.

bee bug two.

bee bug one.

I have no idea but this butterfly watched the whole thing and kept getting closer and closer until the bee buzzed at it.

moth bee watch.

I watched until the bee flew away with the creeper butterfly in tow. It was rather disconcerting and a bit gross so here’s a cute bee on a pretty flower to wash that taste out.

bee-flower-pollen-photography.

Then there’s the mason bee, they come in varying colors. This one is wearing a sassy blue metallic coat that she picked up at the recent New York Fashion week.

mason bee.

The bees and the wasps were all enjoying the  various flowers and hummingbird feeders. The hummingbirds kept a wary eye…

blog hummingbird green irredescence.

..while Dummy hung out on a mushroom.

blog-dummy-art-photography.

I wonder if he knows that he has a thread stuck in his neck joint.

I guess I’ll go tell him, if I can find him. He’s never around when I want him.

Here’s 4×6 pen and ink with watercolor of a Greenman. Thanks to graymare on WetCanvas for putting the photo in the Reference Image Library there.

greenman-pen-ink-watercolor.

.

©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2016

Wandering

Recently I was at Fort Erie, across from Buffalo,  New York. It sits on the shores of Lake Erie, near the mouth of the Niagara River.

From it you can see the gorgeous Art Deco building that is Buffalo City Hall. The City Hall was designed by architect John Wade and finished in 1932. There are triumphant arches and columns and reliefs and sculptures and mosaics and a bat signal on the roof.

Buffalo City Hall Gotham.

Buffalo City Hall blog.

Fort Erie was originally built in 1764 during Pontiac’s Rebellion. Pontiac of course had been overtaking the cart market which the British did not appreciate. Soon after, the Brits sold Jaguar to Ford who sold it to the Tatas, a group of entrepreneurial strippers and a couple hundred years after the Fort was built, Pontiac ceased productions.

Old Fort Erie Gate war 1812.

Okay, that may not be quite what happened.

However at one point during the War of 1812, the Fort did blow up..

What happened was that the British were led by a general so inept, his subordinate officers including his own nephew settled their affairs and gave away valued property before following his battle plans. They knew they were doomed.

They were right. It turned out that firing a cannon over top of a large powder magazine was not a great idea. The explosion threw the two tonne cannon over one hundred  yards. Hundreds died or were wounded and more than 500 soldiers simply disappeared in the initial blast and the ensuing fires.

Brutal stuff.

General Drummond, the man responsible for the whole mess had a road named after him in Niagara Falls.

It’s still there if you’d like to go stomp on it.

Old Fort Erie Pink Floyd.

The tour was quite interesting.

We found out that some people during the 1800’s used old suits of armor as a sort of tactical vest. Pretty clever, not comfortable but clever.

Fort Erie armor war 1812.

They shot off some muskets which was fun to watch.

Old Fort Erie Tour.

They did not however let me use the cannon.

*Sigh*

cannon Fort Erie war 1812.

This is an acrylic of the monument marking the grave site of 153 soldiers. 150  British and 3 Americans. 8×10 inches.

fort erie acrylic monument

——————————————————–

©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2015

Please click here for available prints.

Thank you!

9/11

This is my mother standing on the World Trade Center’s 107th floor of the South Tower while it was being built. My father was an electrical engineer who worked on it and my mother bribed the construction workers to let her go up there.

.

world trade center towers

.

While she was up there taking photos, I drew little square elephants on some of the girders that were waiting to go to the higher floors.

I know logically they were lost in the devastation and tragedy of that day and I know that it matters not a bit.

But somewhere in the back of my mind where I’m still a very little girl, I picture my elephants dancing and playing with the souls of the lost.

And while I grieve for all, I wish for them an eternity of joy and love.

And peace.
Always peace.

.

9/11 peace elephant.

.

—————–

©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2014

Mount Rushmore…

We set out one day to find Mount Rushmore. We drove on winding roads lined with dark forests on a gloomy overcast day. As we rounded a corner in the road, I caught my first glimpse of a rugged granite face. A ray of sun came out and danced on that noble face of the man who refused to become King.

After all the silliness, kitsch and generally amusing tourist traps, I did not expect much.

I did not expect to be charmed. But I was.

I did not expect to be awed. But I was.

I did not expect to be touched. But I was.

I did not expect to be humbled. But I was.

What an enchanting and beautiful memorial.

©Virginia Spencer,  thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2011