Some days I wish I could travel by horse and buggy! This morning the roads are covered with a blanket of snow and the horse and buggies look so beautiful! They have an advantage too since horses travel well thru the snow.
I am working on an Amish Watercolor titled 'Bringing in the Cows'. The painting is based on the daily chore of bringing in the dairy cows from the field for milking. In the painting the Amish mom and her small boy are guiding the cows across the road. I love this scene because of the ties this kind of scene has to our family farms. So often now our lives are so removed from this kind of daily interaction with the farm, the land and our food. I remember when milking my own small herd of dairy goats the fresh air and earthiness of milking them and providing cheese, milk and soap (and occassional fudge!) for my family felt so tangible. I don't get the same sense of connection buying food wrapped in plastic on a styrofoam trays. Our society today can feel so removed from the source so I liked this connectedness, the ties I had to the daily tasks of caring for the garden and the livestock. This sense of connection and earthiness is what I am trying to bring to my art as a reminder of some of the simplier things in life.
As a mom with small children I also appreciated being able to involve my kids in what I was doing. I know from the Amish scene in my new painting the small boy felt pretty important in doing his job of bringing in the cows! His contribution to the family farm was important! Bringing cows in from the field works better when there is someone on each side of the row of cows directing them across, even if that someone is pint sized! As I complete the projects I am working on now I will begin a series on 'Amish Farm Life'. I will be listing my new work on my web site at http://www.amish-art.com/ or http://www.suesteiner.com/ There is a feature on my web site in which you can sign up to be notified when new work is posted. For those of you who are interested you can go here: http://www.suesteiner.com/notify_me.php