Saturday, March 22, 2014

Traveling On

As my departure to the Scottish Highlands nears I offer up some small bits of travel inspiration. There are many forms of travel and wandering and they are all good for the mind and soul. Even on a daily basis, I like to take the back roads rather than the quick roads. For this exchange I am rewarded with a landscape of farms, livestock, fencerows, a myriad collection of birds, and seldom another vehicle. The quotidian task of driving from point A to point B morphs into a lovely/lively amble. Wander when you can, where you can.

Print from Champion Awards on Etsy

- Brian Andreas Story People


Monday, March 17, 2014

Happy St. Patrick's Day

Happy St. Patrick's Day everyone. I hope you have a wonderful day and get a chance to participate in some Irish tradition, even if it's just a pint of the black stuff. I've long been enchanted with Ireland and several trips to the Emerald Isle have only reinforced this. The small country has a lot to offer and the landscape there was surprisingly diverse, changing constantly as we drove up and down and around. Below is a collection of photos that embody this diversity and offer a look into Ireland's breathtaking geology, landscape, history, and ambience.

Grazing sheep near Charleville Castle
Craggy coast in County Clare

The enchanting Giant's Causeway (volcanic Basalt rock formations) on the north coast of County Antrim. Legend has it that the Causeway (or bridge) was built by the mythological hero Finn MacCool in order to battle with the Scottish giant Benandonner. Finn's wife disguises him as a baby in a crib. When Benandonner sees the how large the "baby" is he reckons that Finn is a giant among giants and high tails it back to Scotland ripping up the Causeway behind him as he goes. There is an identical rock formation in Scotland, though perhaps Scotland has a different spin on the tale.

View of Little Skellig from Skellig Michael, home to 6-7th century monastic settlement - one of the most unique experiences Ireland has to offer. The 45 minute choppy boat ride to get there and the hundreds of ancient steps to the isolated top are well worth the visit. 
Lake near Killarney, County Kerry

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Sun Setting on Winter

Only a few more days until the official start of Spring for which we are all eager. Enjoy the stark skeletal trees for a few more weeks before they beef up with leaves. Enjoy the absence of humidity and blood sucking insects, too, for they will return in the blink of an eye. Winter's been long and cold, so let us welcome Spring with appreciation and gratitude.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Springing Up


Monday, March 3, 2014

Wild Green Will Come

Ink and watercolor on watercolor paper.
wild adj. [[Old English wilde]] 1 living or growing in its original, natural state 2 not lived in or cultivated; waste 3 not civilized; savage 4 not easily controlled.
I offer some green today as my home is blanketed in snow. March has arrived; green bulbs are pushing up beneath the snow. Soon, all will be green, I must remind myself. The winter has kept me indoors too often. Even in the snow I venture into my wilderness but the cold limits the duration of these visits. Today it is 14 degrees with an ugly wind chill. But the sun is sharp and the snow is glowing blue white like a flame. It is a sure bet that when spring actually arrives I will be seeking the wild outdoors, the savage and untamed, as briars scrape my ankles and ticks feast on my flesh in secret. But one must pay the fare to enter Wilderness.   
Above is a page from my (upcoming) travel journal, I am readying it for treks through forests, close encounters with leaves. This quote is from the poem by John O'Donohue, "A Blessing of Angels." So intent on the lettering, however, I actually misquoted it. The end should read "...take you to the territories of true otherness." Let it be, I thought. Fixing it would surely ruin it.