Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Vision-Night Lights

Night Lights
9" x 12"
I was sleeping in my aunt's room that night. I don't like the dark and, at home, I keep my tv on all night. It takes me a long time to fall asleep, so I have something to watch. I sleep a little while, wake up and watch, and go back to sleep. I sleep best after the sun comes up.
This night, I had a small radio to listen to, and no tv or light. I opened the drapes to let light from the street light on the corner come into the room. As I used to do when I was a child, before we had tv to watch, I looked out the window at the trees and light, looking for some activity, listening to the trains go through town.
But, in the old days, I didn't have Macular Degeneration and cataracts to deal with. As I looked at the windows, I blinked to try to clear up the image, but it didn't help. I could see the glow of the street light, looking somewhat like fireworks. As I looked into the dark of the street, neon green shapes marched from out of the dark window into the room. They were similar to a loose boomerang and were different sizes. But they did march, in rows, moving through the window and disappearing into the dark room. Along with the green boomerang shapes, there were some small yellow lights that floated around. One was round and stayed low while another was a sort of rectangle that flowed along with the boomerang shapes. These were not lights from houses, as the street was dark except for one house that had a hall light on, that I could not see from the bed. That light was still, while these moved along with the other shapes.
In the painting, the area below the lighter blue line is the wall. Drapes are on each side of the picture.
I closed my eyes and there were still shapes moving around, but these were more like purple against the dark.
"What are these things?" I wondered. "How can I make them go away!"
"Could they be ghosts of the people who once lived here?"
I couldn't make them disappear, so I might as well enjoy them. Just as I have said about the shapes that I saw when I got the Lucentis injection. (See posts from last year.) I might as well sit back, relax, enjoy the abstract art show. Then do some paintings of what I have seen.
Share those with others who might encounter the same thing.
Maybe I could just remember the people who once lived here, or write a story from the images. They do seem to make me think of other things besides the colors, shapes, and movement.
It is true, that, even with your eyes closed, you still see moving shapes, that make it hard to go to sleep, not to mention making it hard to see things.
At this stage, when I close my right eye, there are wavey lines on things I see around the outside edges and an irregular purple spot covering all that I try to look at. The left eye is the one with wet macular degeneration and cataracts. The right eye has cataracts, too, but I can see things better with that eye. I tend to close the "bad" eye when I try to see things.
I watched the shapes until I finally fell asleep that night, and made mental notes about shapes, direction, and colors. Later, I sketched the shapes and window, and, much later, added the color with watercolors. This probably would have worked better on watercolor paper. But I used my sketchbook with 65 # Canson acid free paper. I used Winsor Newton watercolors to add a light layer of color, then added the darker Indigo Blue and the brighter greens after the first layer dried.
In my post about James DeGraffenreid Miles, I left out the names of his brothers. They are all listed on CSA Military Men of Central Alabama. I found this list through the Alabama Dept. of Archives and History online.
Albert Thomas "Tommie" Miles married Ida Katerine Day, sister of Ellen L. Day. CSA, MS 1863. (Truthfully, I don't know what MS, 1863 means. This was on the list. There is more information in the book, "Your Inheritance" Vol. II by Robbie Lee Gillis Ross.)
James "Jim" DeGraffenreid Miles married Ellen L. Day, sister to Ida Katherine, Officer in the CSA, taken prisoner at Ft. Donaldson in 1862, according to the list. He was a POW at the notorious Camp Douglas in Chicago, but was released before the worst times there. He fought again in other battles.
John L. "Bud" Miles, married Mary Elizabeth "Lizzie" "Mollie" Holcomb. Was an officer itn the CSA. He joined Capt. Marcellus Fagg's company in 1862. Fagg was a brother-in-law to the Miles brothers and sisters.
William Miles, MD, married Julia M. Robinson. W.S. Army in Mexico, joined the CSA in Norfolk, VA in 1863.

This is all according to the list. There is a lot more information about them.
Most of these families moved to Texas about the time of the Civil War. Fagg moved to North Carolina after the War.
Whew! We had a quick power outage and I thought I had lost this blog! I'm relieved to find that it had all been saved.
If you are following the EDM (Everyday Matters) challenges, the next one is to draw a shell. Those of you on the coast can do this easier than we can here. Fortunately, I have a shell in my bathroom! Maybe someone will bring me back a good one from the coast. I probably will have drawn one, by then-the one that I have beside my garden tub!
We had some good times, looking for shells out on the little islands off Port O'Conner. It was hard to find good shells on the bay since they were usually broken apart before they hit the beach. I think that I bought the one I have in Galveston, years ago.
If you are in this area, or plan to come here during Sketch Crawl, or for the plein aire workshop, you might like to join the Yahoo Group that I started for people interested in sketching and painting, and such activities in the Brazos Valley area. I put quite a few pictures on there from previous Sketch Crawls and the Plein Aire Workshop from last October in Calvert.
A big get well wish goes out to Walter in Calvert. Hope you get better quickly!
I apologize for the big space again. I don't know how to keep this from happening. I went back and pulled the lines closer together by backspacing, but that is going to leave even more space at the bottom.
I would blame this on the power outage, but this has happened before. I don't know why. I didn't type it with double spacing or anything like that.

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