New Work by Jo

I’m working on a few different paintings. 

One is a portrait of a boy with a conch while sailing on a schooner. Been thinking about this one for a few years and decided to just give it a try. His mom sent the photo for me to create this portrait three years ago, but she has not yet placed the order.

She has contacted me three years in a row, but still no order. She has purchased some of my artwork and loves them.

first sketch by Jo M. Orise

Therefore, I wonder why she changed her mind each time for the protrait.

Now this picture is in my head and wants out.

What do I do?

Draw it. Experiment with it. Lots of fun as I challenge myself in the process.

Here you see the first drawing in my sketchbook. It was okay. After noting things that need to be changed, I drew it on water color paper that had been soaked and stapled to a board to shrink tight.

Still, I put off painting.

So, I got another piece of water color paper, soaked it and just started painting the figure and its surroundings—no stapling, no drawing, just painting.

Boy With Conch Aboard.
by: Jo M. Orise

First it was wet-on-wet technique, then wet-on-dry.

What do you think?

I usually draw a few fine lines and erase them later. None of that here. Like I said it is pretty rough…but fun to do and see.

Next, I’ll just pull out the prepped water color paper that has the last drawing waiting for me.  I look forward to this last part. It will be fun and I’ll post the finished piece.

See my other protraits at jomorise.com .

Looking for comments, tips.

BTW, the wavy looking boom is really the warping of the water color paper. That will straighten out in time.

Leave a comment or a post. I love to know what people think.

Jo

A Glorius Morning for My G-man.

G-man also known as G
G-man was her name. My son named her.

“It’s a female. Why G-man?” I asked.
 
“I don’t know. I just like it. But I call her ‘G’ for short. Can you take care of her  for me, mom?”

“Of course I will, son.”

So G stayed.

Several months later, G disappeared. I searched for two hours. She was just gone. Then I found a phone message waiting for me.

“Your cat was hit by a car. She is at the vet’s. I told them to keep her alive until you returned.” It was Julie. My future sister-in-law. I called her for more information.

“I saw a white fluff on the road’s dividing line and thought is was a sweater or a bag. As I  got nearer, I realized it was a cat. When I stepped out, I recognized G. So I brought her to the vet’s.”

It was now after 5 PM and they were closed for the day. But I called the vet ‘s office anyway. The vet’s assistant let me in and escorted me to G’s cage. She was blind, but she recognized my voice and crawled forward. She sat in her water dish but seemed unaware of it. She pleadingly meowed in the direction of my voice. Not only was she blind from the concussion, but her jaw drooped, her hind leg didn’t work right and I was sure her head ached. She was dirty, mostly with dried blood about her mouth. My heart ached to see her in such a state.

The assistant spoke with me about G’s fate. Because she was blind from a blow to the head and now had a broken jaw and an injury to her hind leg the recommendation was that she be ‘put under’.

“What’s the alternative?” I asked.

English: U.S. Fleet Activities Sasebo, Japan (...
Surgery to save a cat.
“Wire her jaw, and take her home in a week.”

“How much will that cost?”

“We’ll charge for the surgery, but  she can stay and be attended to for a week for free. Then you can bring her home. We can’t make any promises that she will see again.”

I agreed. And within a week, I brought G home in an open box.  Her tail wagged when I walked up to our house. She recognized its smells and was happy to return home.

My dog, ShiSha, was excited to see her buddy back home. But after a few sniffs, Shi Sha turned away and presented no further interest in G.

Once inside, I set up a little stage for G on the kitchen floor. A box set on its side placed on a small rug for G to sleep in with her warm, familiar blanket. To the right of the rug, I set a litter box and to the left, I set a water dish and wet food. G learned to stay in that small environment identified by the boundaries of the rug as she waited for me to come home from work. Upon arrival, I placed her in my lap, rocked her like a baby and sang songs of encouragement.

She still had blood stained fur under her chin. When she felt better I washed her fur to remove the stains from her chin down to her chest. Perhaps she could smell the dried blood. Being clean again, she began to regularly wash herself without my assistance.

One day I set G outside in the grass. She was curious and the smells enticed her to explore. I realized she still couldn’t see because I had to  rescue her from an imminent fall from the edge of a high wall at the edge of the grass area. ShiSha was not impressed and continued to ignore G.

Weeks later, as I readied for work in early morning, G walked into the bathroom and stopped in front of the long mirror behind the door. I observed from another mirror on the opposite wall. She seemed to watch me through her mirror’s reflection of me. I moved my hand. She followed its movement. She meowed.  I picked her up. ShiSha followed me as I brought the cat to the bedroom. I placed her on the bed. She recognized her old play-mate ShiSha looking at her with ears perked and tail wagging. G walked close to the  edge of the bed. The dog and I watched as the cat jumped off the bed!

G-man also known as G
I can see clearly meow.

“G can see, ShiSha!” The dog got very excited and jumped onto the cat. “No ShiSha, don’t hurt her.” ShiSha was happy to have her play-mate and buddy back. She also wanted to play with G NOW. I calmed ShiSha who then followed G throughout the house. She didn’t bump into furniture and eventually jumped onto the couch. She lovingly grabbed ShiSha’s head as she accepted a juicy lick on the cheek from her buddy.

It was a glorious morning for all three of us!

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What’s A Cat For?

For people.  :-)
Cats have been around for a very long time. They have been around humans for about 9500  years. Can you imagine the fleas?

A Maine Coon cat.
Charlie

When I adopted Charlie, one of my colleagues warned me, “He won’t last the six months at your place.” That disturbed me because I had lost three cats within the last three years. I hoped it wouldn’t happen again for Charlie loved to romp and hang around the woods outside our home. Ten years later, he still does!

More than once, I’ve searched for him at night or early morning if he hadn’t returned home by dark. He usually comes home when it was safe (I believe). He is a great hunter and a very wary traveler. That would account for his survival. He is a Maine Coon cat, which gives him  coloring that blends into our surrounding. He wears camouflage!

Our property is part of a forest. Wildlife from owls, hawks, coyotes, bears, fox and raccoons roam at different times looking for a meal. We found animal tracks in the snow around the perimeter of our house in 2009, identified as mountain lion. A neighbor photographed a mountain lion in our neighborhood that same winter. Another watched a lion in his back yard drag a deer off in deep snow. Scary. Now, I fret at letting Charlie out or before I go out at night.

I walked up to a black bear this last summer. He was more frightened of me than I of him. However, I know he is only about a year old. I watched momma bear and her three cubs the previous summer as they caught Charlie’s attention at the living room window. They were picking berries right by our door. The cat was ecstatic. The bears were so cute. But leave them alone and all is well.

American Black Bear (Ursus americanus), Réserv... 
My Black Bear friend.

My bear friend and I had unanticipated meetings this past summer, I felt he was obviously not accustomed to nor totally aware of his surroundings and unsure of what is perceived as a danger.

The bear and I had met about four times. Each time he seems to contemplate what to do next. Finally he remembers what mom said before he last departed to venture on his own, “Stay away from two legged animals who live in strange caves.” So he clumsily turns stumbling and crashing through the woods. If I walked up to this same bear and he were older, would he turn and run as before? I hope so.

Two days ago, as I walked our half mile drive, I heard a sudden crashing to my left among the trees at the edge of the drive. From the sound of each step, whatever it was, it was heavy. I stopped, anxiously determining what it could be. Then I realized it was my friend the bear. No other animal was as clumsy and noisy as he. I think we both kept an eye on each other. I had to return after retrieving the mail and there was no sign of my friend. He was probably up a tree like his mom taught him to avoid humans.

My cat, Charlie is still part of the family. I believe he thinks himself human. He understands some of our words and we understand some of his. Between his purrs, meows, growls and body language, I know when he is hungry, happy, angry, wants a treat, wants us to accompany him on a walk, doesn’t want us to leave or wants us to go to bed by 9:00 PM. He jumps on our chest in the AM telling us it is time to get up and be about our business, which is to feed him and let him outside! If we don’t feed him on time, no worry, he finds food for all. He meows while carrying a rodent in his teeth. As he approaches the door he indicates, “I know you are out of food, so come eat. I’ll share.”

That’s my Charlie cat.

Yes, cats are for people.

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