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Archive for June, 2014

This past week has been quite dreamy at the Matfield Outpost Residency. I feel right at home in the cozy studio working on my Flint Hills Series of watercolors. I love walking from the house to the studio and then settling in to work.

Hilary in studio

Hilary in studio

Homer and Conrad playing fetch while I cut paper

Homer and Conrad playing fetch while I cut paper

The best part is having my dogs with me. We spent a lot of time out walking the hills and they stayed close by me when I was working.

It has been fantastic hanging out with Ton Haak and Ans Zoutenbier the Directors of the Gallery at Pioneer Bluff. And the good news is that I will be back in October for my own exhibition with opens on October 4th.

Today I walked just over seven miles at the Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve. This place is beautiful and scary. It is part of the 170,000,000 acres of tallgrass prairie. The national park has over 40 miles of trail where you have to cross through cattle and bison fields. While I wanted to see wild bison I am glad I didn’t as I would have been afraid, I was terrified of the cattle, especially being 4-5 miles out in the prairie all alone. Three times I had to cross the path covered in cattle, one time they started trotting toward me and I was sweating like mad because I did not know how to get them to go the other way.

Bison alert

Bison alert

But if you can handle walking through the cattle you are in for a real treat, it is a sea of green for miles in every direction.

Miles of beautiful green

Miles of beautiful green

tall_grass

 

 

 

 

I am packing up all my stuff tonight and photographing the last of the work I made. It is to bad I only have my  cell phone camera, my nice Canon A100 (or could be nice) is broken again. This has been the worst camera I ever owned, first I got lens errors, now the shutter will not work, it was an expensive disappointment.

But I have my  cell phone to show you some of my work, these are all watercolor with collage of Italian printed papers, they are 12″ x 16″. I can’t wait to come back, Matfield Outpost is the most awesome place!

1_Matfield_drawing

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Watercolor collage by Hilary Lorenz

Watercolor collage by Hilary Loren 

Watercolor collage by Hilary Lorenz

Watercolor collage by Hilary Lorenz

Watercolor collage by Hilary Lorenz

Watercolor collage by Hilary Lorenz

2_Matfield_drawing

Watercolor collage by Hilary Lorenz

 

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Walking the Lake

 

 

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This is a collage drawing that I finished yesterday. It is 12″ x 16″ and made up of watercolor, lino print and antique Italian printed papers.

TodayI left Outpost Studios for a little drive to Chase County Fishing Lake. It is about 15 miles from the studio and 1.5 north of Cottonwood Falls. It is hot, 91 degrees and I knew a good walk was in order for me and a swim for the dogs. The Chase State Lake is 109 acres with a limestone shore and surrounded by lush green hills and prairies.  My phone was dead so I could not get any photos, and unfortunately my camera does not work. Here is a shot I got on-line from an aerial view. 
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Conrad and Homer were very happy. I mapped the perimeter of the lake at 3.15 miles around, they swam pretty much the whole thing. Two fisherman were on the opposite bank as us and we chatted for a bit when I made it back around. The lake is beautiful and I really needed some walking time.  I am only here one week and I want to make art but really I need to walk and be in the landscape in order to do that. So my plan now is to spend 4-5 hours in the morning out running or walking, then do some work in the afternoon and see how that goes. I think this must be the greenest place in the country.

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It's all about the Journey

Matfield Green, Kansas

 

I am in Matfield Green, Chase County, Kansas, population 47. I fought to get here and now I am in a place where the endless green prairie meets the sky  giving me an odd feeling of being on the bottom of a fish bowl.

The fight? My car, traffic, my car, construction, my car. I had, yes had, a 1996 Subuaru Legacy wagon, 194,000 miles. After a goodbye dinner with my friends, turning over my apartment to a trusted subletter, I drove away and got 30 miles into New Jersey and my car died on the Turnpike. I was not even suppose to be on the Turnpike, I made a wrong turn. Calling AAA, a tow truck came, but they were not AAA, as AAA was not allowed on the Turnpike. So this tow took me 1/2 mile to a parking lot where I  waited for AAA who towed me to a very nice auto repair shop that was just closing. They recommended I go home, but I have no home now, so they recommended I get a rental car and hotel which I did. It was not easy NJ hotels do not seem to like dogs. After several “no ways” I found a hotel who charged me an extra $100 a night for the dogs. The next morning they tried to tell me it is $100 per dog but there was no way I was giving in to that.

I waited for the auto shop to call, and by noon I had to check out so I went back. Turns out they had to replace my fuel pump. A little detail that I left out is that they suspected the fuel pump which could mean taking the seats out of the car, a car filled with materials for my artist residency. I had to unload about 250 pounds of stuff into a back of a pick-up truck stored on their lot. Anyhow, they fixed the car, and anticipating a bill that was higher than the price of my car ($2,500) I was thrilled when it was only $450. They did a tune-up, tightened some rattling bolts and by 2pm I was on my way again. Two hundred and fifty miles later, the tachometer dropped, accelerator dropped, temp gauge dropped, and engine failure. I called AAA, they came and got me, again. This time the young ambitious tow truck driver said he would take me to a Subaru dealer/service center, then to a hotel. Homer, who was too afraid to jump into the tow truck was carefully lifted in by the driver. It was about 9pm as we drove to the dealership, then to his auto body shop and finally the hotel. He watched the dogs as I got my room, I gave him a handsome tip for being kind, entertaining, and getting me safely back.

I figured it was the car’s computer, but could be total electrical failure. I would have to wait until they opened to find out. In the meantime I got on-line and checked out cars. I knew I needed a new car but I thought I could wait until I got to NM, and I was not about to be sold something I cannot afford in my state of duress. Most all the cars were 2014 and too expensive. There was a 2006 Subaru Outback, 103,000 miles, and affordable if they still had it. I called the next morning and the service center only did oil changes on the weekend. The Subaru techs would not be in until Monday. I was not about to stay in that PA hotel two more night, plus my artist residency in Matfield Green, Outpost Studio, was beginning on Sunday. I asked them to send someone to come pick me and the dogs up, I want to buy a car. Yes, I was about to walk into a car dealership, something I have never done in my life and buy  a car.

My new car

My new car

The dealership was quiet with several sale’s people, salesmen and one saleswoman. I went right to her, to Katie. I told her the problem, what I want, we talked, I tested the car I saw on-line and we made a deal. They began the paperwork as I got on-line and ordered a duplicate title for my car. You see, I am leaving my old car at the dealership, and will have a charity organization tow it away for a tax credit, but I must have the title. The title is packed away in some box in NYC and I was not going back for me. Katie and the staff worked with me. I have to pay NYC sales tax but I am not going back to NYC. The check would be cut from the dealership and the title information sent to me via Fedex once I got to where I am going. For now, that is Matfield Green Kansas.

I did make it on Sunday, not at 11am but at 7pm. The artmaking has begun.

My cute little studio on the side of the prairie

My cute little studio on the side of the prairie

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