Tuesday, September 27, 2011

"Waterman Sunrise"
photograph © Bruce A. Morrison

Its fall already (!) and its been just glorious here.  Although I hate time slipping by so quickly, I'm a sucker for autumn!  I've been doing more work than prairie upkeep this year...with so much to do here in the studio, my prairie experience has been mostly relegated to exploring, photographing and painting (or drawing).  

I love the exploring part!  This year I've been very blessed to get access to some very nice places to walk and photograph.  They've all been in the "neighborhood" here...but this neighborhood is intoxicating and I'm hooked bad.

We live along the Waterman Creek in the valley here...this creek is part of the Little Sioux River shed and this river shed has been identified as one of the last large tallgrass remnant areas in this state (Iowa).

"Cattle Crossing"
color pencil drawing © Bruce A. Morrison

Top that off with the richness of cultural heritage here and its just hard to not get drawn in and absorbed.  I can only lament that I wish I'd been here and exposed decades ago!  I'm certainly not getting any younger but I haven't felt this way since I was a kid and discovered the river and creeks near my home for the first time.

I think being an artist of regional bent...a representational painter, a landscape photographer, a prairie fanatic, is all my vision desires and that is where I'm at now.  I'm home.

"Summer Evening on Waterman"
oil on mounted canvas - 9X12"
© Bruce A. Morrison

But this "home boy" needs to earn a living so here comes my shameless plug!  You can see the prairie up close and personal here in my studio/gallery at the Prairie Hill Farm Studio during the 2011 Artisans Road Trip coming up this Friday (September 30) from 4-8:00 p.m. and Saturday through Sunday (October 1 and 2) from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. each day!

Come see the prairie on canvas, in the frame, on the easel or here in the valley (or all of the above)!  Enjoy some conversation, drink some fresh (from here at the acreage) raspberry lemonade and eat decadent treats!  We'd love to see ya!

Have a wonderful fall - hope to see you on the Tallgrass!!!

Monday, September 12, 2011

It has been a whirl wind summer!  Too bad it just does not slow down a tad, but that is just the way of things I guess.

We had our Monarch roost again this year here at the acreage.  It wasn't particularly impressive...about 300 the heaviest evening...down to just 9 last night.  But it was a neat sight none-the-less.  I suspect the Monarchs we're seeing now are from the pasture here...we were still finding caterpillars here on the milkweeds just 8 days ago; some of those individuals may now be adults feeding here.

The weather fronts have been moving them out.  The first morning after our high numbers, the wind had switched out of the north and Monarchs were rising above the tree tops and being blown south at quite an impressive speed!  (Hated seeing them leave but what can you do!?)

Journey North and Monarch Watch are still two really good sites to check out, report through, and support with your donations...its a remarkable natural heritage, and one I look forward to each year. 

Hope the last days of the summer are treating you well - see you on the tallgrass!