Going to Blue Mountain

If anything could teach one the cost of attachment to worldly goods, a backpack containing a 17” laptop, 2 professional cameras, plus all necessary peripherals will do it…or at least it will slow you down.

On the other hand, an artist needs her tools.  Did Georgia have to pack her stuff around?  Then again, I’m not Georgia!

at SF airport
Flight 88

It’s Thursday evening.  Oola and I are on the red eye to Blue Mountain Center in the Adirondacks, upstate New York.

There had been a moment when over three hundred people wondered why we were not taking off.  It seems that a lady had put her two dogs on the plane, and then she did not show up.  There was a kerfuffle as to what to do about the dogs when finally she, the owner, materialized and was escorted – eyes lowered, cat in tow – down that long, narrow aisle, under the curious if not hostile gaze of 600 eyes, to the back of the airplane.  Oola and I were divided as to whether we should curse or pity her.  Maybe she enjoyed being the center of a drama.  Let’s hope there was a worthy story to accompany the display.

There would be no sleep this night.  I would watch a map of the United States unfurl below me.

Lifting off from San Francisco in the growing dark was an enchantment in itself.  I saw a soft layer of fog illuminated from below by the multi-hued lights of the City.  A large moon was climbing a ladder of protracted clouds.

Cities appeared like distant fireworks.  Most amazing was to witness the emergences of quicksilver snakes in the blackscape below.  These were, of course, rivers illuminated by that big moon which accompanied us through the night.  Most stunning were the shimmering disks of lakes, especially in the Illinois area.  As we passed over them, the moon would add a special phosphorescent glow to their borders.

My only regret was that the tiny iPhone camera couldn’t capture them.

At one point, to the south, Oola witnessed great flashes of lightening.  She displayed a wisdom unusual to her nature by not shouting “Did you see THAT?!”  All fellow travelers were at least trying to sleep.

Flying into the dawn we watched trails of clouds define the contours of hill country.

above the clouds
Above the clouds

Much good art to see in the airports.  For example, this spectacular piece by William Wiley.

art by Wm Wiley at SF Airport

At the Albany Airport we saw a small show – “Where the Boundaries Fade” –  of exquisite collage/paintings by Robert Gullie.  Somewhere between folk art and surrealism, his images brought to mind both renaissance tales and the spare perfection of a Japanese floral arrangement.

Robert Gullie, title unknown

It is so easy to make a cluttered collage.  Guillie’s compositions go straight to the visual point: Just enough to bring the narration together and no more.

These were digital reproductions of the originals, something I would normally question, but the quality of the prints were such that I was fooled into believing the tiny edges of glue around the assembled elements.

Robert Gullie, title unknown

Apologies for the reflections in the glass.  They were unavoidable in the circumstances.

Now I am at Blue Mountain having recovered some of my lost sleep.  The air is warm and it is raining a beautiful soft rain.  This is the view from my studio back window.

Apologies for the reflections in the glass.  They were unavoidable in the circumstances. Now I am at Blue Mountain having recovered some of my lost sleep.  The air is warm and it is raining a beautiful soft rain.  This is the view from my studio window.
Back view from my studio at BMC

Feeling much gratitude here.

Love to all, More to come.

By jandove


1 comment

  1. HI Jan,

    Thanks for the airplane trip across the US. I too spend all my time
    looking down at the earth. I have never had a problem using my
    Nikons, even since 9/11, when photographing out the window.
    Have many sets of take offs and landings and used to use them
    in performances.

    Hope you get off to a good start with your projects.



Leave a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: