Spending an entire day outside in the woods with my husband and dogs (and no other people in sight) is the thing that makes me feel like I’ve had my weekend. This Saturday I was lucky to have one of my much-craved perfect days in the forest. We walked in the mountains of Pecos, New Mexico—as we love to do—for hours and hours. After that much fresh air and solitude, I feel completely exhausted and recharged at the same time.
I spent a good portion of the day laying on a rock and listening to the water, staring up at a bright blue sky bordered by trees and broken by an occasional raven swinging in the wind. This, I think, is where I get my biggest doses of refreshment, sanity, and inspiration: the arrangement of tree bark, leaves, and twigs; the sound of air in pine needles and dry grass, and a cold stream over stones; the smell of sun on dry dirt and flowers about to bloom. Signs of spring are starting to show. We were surprised how hot the sun was for such an early date in May, and watched the warm afternoon light hitting the bare white trunks of the aspen groves and filtering through evergreens. The snow had melted near the stream we were following, although the water was still ice-cold. Little green buds showed on most of the rose bushes, and leaves of irises poked up in clumps all over the meadows. Red willow branches crisscrossed down the edge of the creek. Spring is on the way.
Here are a few pictures from the day. From a design perspective, I sought out these images with unexpected patterns, light, and shadow in mind. Undoubtedly, the scene will change dramatically every week or two throughout the summer. I’m anticipating using these ideas of lines and movement in some of our upcoming projects. Or, maybe I should get going on my New Year’s goal (5 months later) of keeping up a better sketchbook.