Plenty of roses and not much thorns

Sharpee pen and watercolor in Arches Travel Book

If you want to have a warm and cozy feeling, just look at a goat warming itself in the sun.  Mmmmmm!  Such bliss.  And as you can see the heat reflected off the ground warms the underside.  The chickens like to sort of wallow in a warm spot and spread out their feathers to get maximum body coverage so they look kind of limp and smashed up, but truly they are also stewing in sweet sensory delight.

I don’t think I saw the Colonel get much rest though.  Apparently his job as top rooster is to be on patrol for marauding hawks which could thin out his harem.

At mealtimes (or when curious customers or sketchers want a show) Carole comes out and bangs the metal lid of the can with the feed and her flock comes scooting out to meet her.  I brought some of my Layena pellets, which my chickens adore, thinking I would call an assembly myself.  They came when I banged, but looked around for the food and were disappointed in my choice of cuisine, and ate not one single pellet of my food!  Come to find out that these chicken royalty get fed bird seed with sunflower seeds mixed in.  With that I can’t compete.

Both days of the workshop  some of us ate at the recently opened restaurant across the street from Rose and Thorn. Advertising Cheap and Chic food it is called P30 and I never found out what that stands for.  The food was delicious and the waitresses and decor quite chic, providing a fun interlude in our sketching.  I always make students sketch at the table.  Later I cut up the restaurant’s card and had fun glueing it on my sketch.

another chicken lover, my mother Ellen, at Rose and Thorn

On Sunday afternoon, right after my painting demo in the garden, my mother arrived on a bus trip to visit the shop and gardens and of course chickens and goats!

A great weekend all told.  We snatched the sunshine right out of this rainy May month, just in time for another downpour today as I write.

If you want to join me on another similar sketch-capade, I’ll be teaching a weekend workshop on Travel Sketchbooking at Gualala Arts Center on the California north coast June 26 and 27.  More information on the Art Center website along with information about accommodations.



  1. So happy that the sun came out for you on both days! Isn’t this a crazy month. I love your chickens, such personality… I hope to come to another workshop sometime in the future. E


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