Friday, December 27, 2019

I'm Back

I guess you've noticed that I've been MIA for a little over a month. This past month has been filled with so many other things that needed to be done. The month of November started out with a presentation for the Women's Ministry of my church - which I am told was a success. Then the holidays were upon us; Thanksgiving, then Christmas. Have you ever thought about the fact that we celebrate three holidays in a short period of time - starting with Halloween at the end of October. Busy, busy time.

To make matters worse, I was not operating at 100% ability. Let me explain. I was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Disease (commonly referred to as Rheumatoid Arthritis) in late 2011 and have been under doctor's care ever since. It can be a debilitating disease and there are days that doing anything at all - physically or mentally - can be almost impossible to handle. I still paint, but it takes me longer to finish a work. Sometimes when I'm hurting I just push through and other times painting has also proven to be cathartic in the sense that it takes me out of the pain.

Here's a painting I just finished today.

Mauna Kea at Sunset
Commissioned by a friend back in November. They requested a painting of this mountain - the tallest point in the islands - in the world - when you consider it from its base deep in the ocean. Mt. Everest stands at 29,035 feet above sea level, and undeniably the "highest altitude" in the world, but the highest mountain is Mauna Kea. The catch: it's a dormant volcano which is about 19,700 feet below the Pacific Ocean, in other words, more than half of it is submerged. When you add everything together, Mauna Kea is over 10,000 meters tall or way taller than the 8,850 meters of Mt. Everest - making it the "worlds tallest mountain." The location is near ideal because of its dark skies from lack of light pollution, good astronomical seeing, low humidity, high elevation of 4,205 meters (13,796 ft), position above most of the water vapor in the atmosphere, clean air, good weather and low latitude location. 

 At present there is a lot of controversy surrounding this mountain. Because of the ideal conditions stated above, there are already observatories on top of the mountain, but the scientists/ astrologist want to build more and larger observatories to house larger telescopes. The governor has approved that build, but the local people are in arms about that because they consider the mountain sacred. They have been fighting against the construction for several months. The activists have been literally living on the summit of the mountain for months in an attempt to keep construction from starting.

Normally it wouldn't have taken me this long to finish, however, there were a couple of weeks that I could not bring myself to paint. Now that's done, I'm ready to take on another project.

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