December 06,2019

                #10   THE INTRUDER

One morning, after days of solitude and sunshine, I felt the trailer rock. I turned from the stove to see a man leaning into my trailer, totally blocking the doorway.

            The man was extremely tall, heavy set and appeared to be in his early fifties. He wore a dusty Stetson hat, a Western style shirt, a red neckerchief and faded blue jeans tucked into elaborately tooled, well worn cowboy boots. His thick leather belt held a holster and big gun.

            There was no sign of London, and I was instantly awash in panic. No phone, no quarry guard to whom I could call and my only exit blocked. G.B., my protector, was a hundred fifty miles away. I wanted to scream and run. Instead I stared, unable to move, dreading whatever horror awaited me!

            “Do you know where the jasper deposit is Ma’am?” the man politely inquired. “My rock hound map shows one in this area.”

            Oh Gad! He was only a Snowbird, the harmless, joyous breed that flies south to the Valley of the Sun each winter. They don cowboy boots and hats, guns and turquoise jewelry, then play rock hound, prospector, gold miner, cowboy and golf until spring training, when “Canada Honkers” signal the trip north for the summer.

            I pointed to the yellow jasper deposit down below my butte, but I knew the assessment work had all been stolen. G.B. and I had already hunted in vain for pieces of “his” yellow jasper, with which we planned to have someone make bookends, a bolo tie and belt buckle.

Posted by Charlotte Madison at 12:50
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February, 2020
January, 2020
For over forty years, painting related totally to the American Southwest. It was people of the dry hot desert, solid mesas, cacti, stone and canyons that made my heart leap.

When I realized I would never see the desert again, I began a search for something to paint. Nana suggested, B.C, vineyards and took me to Penticton where I did one painting. Nana and Gary then began to take me on Mystery tours of the island and always included a vineyard. But they all were so green! So many leaves so many trees - I don't do trees and I rarely use green - dont really like looking at green, but I got started on a duty series not an inspired series.

I guess it was July or early August when we were driving home from a winery visit. I was grousing about painting the Festive Flying Grape series when Gary said "Start another series, you can work on more than one at a time."

For some reason those words triggered the words "I could paint the Island artists!" Nana and Gary agreed and it was the topic of conversation all the way home

For a while I was afraid I wouldn't get volunteers to pose but it is rolling and each one offers something special to inspire me. And it is lovely to feel all I am doing was sparked by Gary and like all I do, supported by Nana.

April Update 2012 Sixteen fine artists, many of national repute, have posed for Artists of Vancouver Island and many are booked or promised. There will be no poses after June 30,2012. When I have painted all twenty-five I will turn my thought to . . . what next?