August 19, 2007

Smoked Out

As you may have heard, there is a major forest fire burning where I live in Santa Barbara county. It's the longest burning fire in the history of California. So far, it's burned 215,000 acres in 1-1/2 months. It's about to cross over into Ventura county and they expect it to burn for at least another month. Their main focus is controlling what direction the fire will burn. Fortunately, no structures have been burned so far although several evacuations have been issued.
Usually the air quality is very good where I live, but that has changed because of the fire. The direction of the wind makes a huge difference on whether or not you can go out. Some days the sky has an overcast orange glow to it and it is snowing ash. Other days, it's a beautiful blue sky.
Needless to say, a lot of people are having problems breathing, myself included. I ended up getting a sinus infection and generally feeling lousy. So I've been taking a bunch of medicine and staying inside trying to get it cleared up and overall I'm beginning to feel better. I've bought a paper mask in case it gets bad again and I need to go out.
I've been finishing a couple of projects, it's about all I've had the energy for. I appreciate all the feedback you gave me about finishing my latest piece. There were some great ideas that made me think differently. I ended up stitching Sliver metallic thread into the piece and then sewing it onto a painted canvas. Here's the final version. I'm still pondering whether I should finish it with a very narrow painted wood frame.