Lois Reynolds Mead

Art and a pink monkeyflower in a native plant garden…


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June Bird Walk…

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Lands End

From Leah Garchik’s column in the San Francisco Chronicle this week: “The season of summer vacations is upon us. Laurie Ustruck was at the western edge of the city looking at the ruins of Sutro Baths, alongside a mom who seemed to be visiting her daughter. Said the mother, “I thought you were bringing me to a Lands’ End outlet store.”

Definitely not one of your outlets, we found…

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The building on the left is the Cliff House Restaurant (more about that later)…

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We gathered with the group of birdwatchers from TM’s class. Early morning last Saturday. Actually, we were there by 8:00 a.m. which meant we left home at 7:00 and, much to my surprise, where we live was blistering hot, the beautiful coast stayed cool and foggy all morning as we walked. This National Park has stunning views and lots of history behind it. We parked above the Sutro Baths and walked the path that was where the steam train and later the electric street car delivered San Franciscans to the Baths. No outlet has that kind of history behind it!

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We were surrounded by yellows on the trek (and a little red, orange and pink) what with all the lupine in bloom…

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of course, monkeyflower…

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I finally identified what this is (and it came in many shades)…it is wild radish and is quite tasty!

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Caught our first glimpse of the Golden Gate (but was not golden in this light…couldn’t even see the tops)…

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A plethora of cormorants and gulls…Gulps of cormorants, rookery, sunning, swimming…

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and thickets where if we spent some time we would probably see many species…

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We circled up behind the Palace of Fine Arts where we had been the week before visiting the “Intimate Impressionism” show. I did not know there was a nice dome on the back…but the redtails were circling…

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We went down and around the golf course (watching our heads for errant golf balls)…

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and in these trees saw juvenile redtails learning stuff that birds learn when they fledge out of their nests…

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Once we came around the golf course we walked down the trail the way we had come…

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Harbor seals were up on the rock (definitely not “sunning” themselves).

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Oyster catchers (almost bright enough to see their flame scarlet bill with its orange yellow tip).

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Back to the parking lot and down the hill to the Cliff House for (wait for it…) Popovers and this view…

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As we walked back up the hill to our car we saw a redtail motionless on a draft having a good ride before he bore down on an unsuspecting rodent…

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The graffiti on the sidewalk said it all…

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Intimate Impressionism…

We drove over to the Palace of the Legion of Honor last week to see a show of small Impressionist paintings. This show will be at the museum until August 3 and as a bonus there is a beautiful view of the Golden Gate Bridge as you walk to the entrance.

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We arrived about noon, so we went to the restaurant first to enjoy a lunch.

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The restaurant always connects their offerings with the show that is on display. I had the Camille Pisarro Quiche and TM had the Claude Monet Kale Salad…

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We were also joined by multiple friends who were anticipating and hoping for our exit…

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A very amazing thing was that in the exhibit they actually allowed photos without flash. I will share some of my favorites.

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Animals and People

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I was dodging people so the type of the labels was not always straight, for which I apologize. Next post will be still-lives and landscapes…


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On the water…

A lovely foggy Friday to cross the new Bay Bridge looking for art at the Legion of Honor. The new bridge is a soaring sight and quite ethereal.

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When you get to the Legion of Honor you also get a view of the other famous bridge…IMG_3853

“The Impressionists on the Water” runs until October 13 and it is a beautiful show. No photos in side the exhibit but I was awed by color lithographs by Seurat. Layers of color in the pointillism style, blended by the eye into depth and texture of water.

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Whenever I go to this museum I pop into the room that has their Rodin sculptures. I think of him as old friend, now, because I have been to the Rodin Museum in Paris and I have seen where he lived and worked. This time at the Legion of Honor I caught sight of Camille Claudel and a work she had done. She had been part of the exhibit “Les Papesses”  at the Pope’s Palace in Avignon in June and now I understand why she is usually found in close proximity to Rodin’s work.

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Camille by Rodin and Rodin by Camille…

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Re-creating statues…

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Patterns in the courtyard…

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The view from the front steps…

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I am usually so unsuccessful at catching photos of birds that I  don’t try anymore. Good luck this day, however, a little guy was so intent with the water that he was almost hovering for my convenience…

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Rather than head back east in search of lunch, we realized we were not too far from the edge of the earth, so we headed west the few blocks to Land’s End and where the Sutro Baths used to be. It was a wise choice since the fog was starting to lift and we could imagine ourselves “on the water,”  evidently our theme for the day.  We have lived in Northern California for a very long time, but have never been to the Cliff House Restaurant and we were happy to expand our education of historical San Francisco landmarks.

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Playland Cowboy

Playland Cowboy

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Back over that new bridge to home…

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“I am dancing, dancing on the edge of the world”—Rumson Ohlone Song

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1573…

Cosimo I de’Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany

by Cellini and workshop

I took this photo when I visited The Legion of Honor last August but saved it until now because a week from today Terry and I will be flying to Tuscany. One week in Florence and one week in the countryside staying in Montalcino but daytripping to Siena, San Gimignano, and Orvieto. But since we will be on an Untour, we can make it up as we go along. As we get closer and closer the excitement gets greater and greater.

The past few weeks we have been doing a major construction project that has finally ended (although the painting of walls and trim goes on). It was chaos because we put new windows in six different places and it required a lot of moving furniture and items out-of-the-way so that the worker-men could get access and have room to work. One positive was that a lot of clean out went on. So I went through a pile of magazines that I had saved for inspiration, but they had now outworn their welcome. I was so surprised to find an old issue of Somerset Studio (2001) dedicated to Tuscany. I must have thought even back then that this would be a good place to go. There was an entire page in the magazine devoted to locations of paper stores in Florence. I plan to see if they are all still there and will report back in three weeks when we return. Here’s the list in case you get to visit there (and you like paper!)

Giannini e Figlio, Piazza Pitti 37

Il Torchio,  Via Dei Bardi 17

Il Papero, in the Piazza Duomo

Pineider, Piazza Della Signoria 13

Et Cetera, Via Della Vigna Nuova 82/r

Rigacci, Via Dei Servi 7

Carteria Tassotti, Via Dei Servi 9/11r

Ciao (I just had to say that!)


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Paper, Paper, Paper…

Pulp, Pulp, Pulp…

I am thinking how much I love paper…

The Legion of Honor is currently having a major exhibit of the Art of Isabelle de Borchgrave called Pulp Fashion. An artist from Brussels, she recreates historic costume in painted and patterned paper. There were Renaissance costumes and gowns of Elizabeth I and Marie Antoinette. Also, couture creations from Dior, Chanel and Fortuny. The exhibit includes a series that was all white with subtle white pattern and Elizabethan lace collars made from filmy lens cleaning paper. Unfortunately, the policy at the Legion is the same as that at the DeYoung. Their major exhibits do not allow photography, so I am left with offering you multiple links to images.

•This news report introduces the exhibit.

•This blog shows photos.

•The Legion of Honor has a documentary. (The third part of the documentary has a section with kids enjoying the exhibit experience.)

•The museum also has pictures on its site.

•The sculpture of this painting was a favorite because of the chicken. (From Wikipedia)

https://i0.wp.com/upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/3/39/Stanzione%2C_Massimo_-_Woman_in_Neapolitan_Costume_-_1635.jpgMassimo Stanzione, Woman in Neopolitan Costume, 1635

Cliff really likes the paper chicken in the catalog I purchased.

I could, however, take pictures in their permanent exhibit. They have a beautiful collection of Rodin sculptures, so I concentrated on the hands.

The hand photos were processed with the Plastic Bullet app on my iPhone.

If you can get there, see this exhibit. It is open until June 5. Then, get out your stencils, your brushes, your paper and your paint. Make something beautiful. I am off to dig out my pattern-paper (which is what she uses). I hope I grow up to be like Isabelle!

P.S. A few weeks ago I installed a free app on my iPhone called Fortuny. Why I did that I do not know…we do not live in an environment where we would have that type of fabric on furniture (too many cats and dogs that think couches are beds around here. We are way more utilitarian in our choices for upholstery). I think I was just wanting to look at all the patterns. (Kind of like my free level app that I could use, if I wanted to. When I walk into any room. I am prepared to level the pictures on the walls. Although, if I was still teaching it would be perfect for putting up all those bulletin boards.) Now I have to find out more about Fortuny and go buy paper napkins from Caspari in their Isabelle line, of course…

Pattern, Pattern, Pattern


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iPhone Photo Friday…

Visited the Legion of Honor yesterday on a day you would have thought was summer. It was a Classic Pan type of day, because of the clear skies and wide/long view.

Luckily, we had a long walk up to the museum and we were treated to a fantastic view along the way. (A side of the Golden Gate I had never seen.)

The tip of land with trees on top across the Bay is known as Hawk Hill. It is where Terry has gone for years on Thursdays during the migration season of raptors south. I would always give him such sympathy because he would have to leave so early, be gone so long, sit on a short stool in a blind trying to lure the raptors down for banding (not comfortable for old bones and joints). But no longer. It turns out all these years he was going to the most beautiful place in the world. How hard can that be? On another raptor note: the eggs being incubated on top of the PGE building in San Francisco are getting ready to hatch. You can watch it all unfold here.