While walking up to my studio yesterday, I saw my first flock of geese flying north.  There have been robin and killdeer sightings, too, but not yet by me.  These are fairly good indicators that spring is truly on its way, although it is not unusual to see robins looking for worms under the snow.

Getting back into my studio to work on the backlog of portrait commissions and other projects feels wonderful.  Even though I was fretting the whole time I was away, thinking about all the work I had to do, I feel more inspired to tackle the various projects.

I started work on two portrait commissions today.  Here is a work in progress of a memorial portrait sketch of Bucky, a beloved family pony.  I will post a photo of the other one as soon as it is far enough along.

 Bucky Work In Progress, Pastel,  © 2011 Julie A. Brown

It was such a gorgeous day that I took a break from portrait work, and headed outside for a little tea, chocolate and sketching.  It was a bit brisk out in the open, but I found a sheltered spot against some hay bales where I was able to shed my jacket and gloves.  Hurray!


Jazz and Heart, our two border collies, love to accompany me on my outings.  Shadow-watching is one of their favourite activities, when there isn't anything more exciting to do.