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Bluebonnets, Bicyclists, and Shaving Cream


John Cooper School

John Cooper School

Driving to the first SAQA circle meeting was probably not the ideal way to spend a morning after I had pulled a 24 hour shift replete with my nurse becoming a patient. But filling the well with talk of art and being with other artists sometimes is more important than sleep. The drive from Rusk to the John Cooper School in The Woodlands is over three hours through some winding roads and finally on Interstate 45.




I hoped, in vain, to spot the turkey tree again. Three months ago, I had come around a corner in the mist and fog and early morning to see a tree laden with birds. Birds I had thought were starlings or perhaps crows but as I got closer and a few flew to the ground were actually wild turkeys—thirty or more all in that tall oak tree. Turkeys belong on the ground or on the dinner table or in the frozen food bin at the grocery store but not in trees!


No turkeys this trip, although my camera was ready.


Fields of bluebonnets filled the median just north of Huntsville and I began to notice what seemed to be tropical birds along the right side of the road. Bicyclists streamed along the access road, garbed in yellow, red, blue, and green jerseys, all enjoying the wonderful weather and beautiful landscape. I thought it might be a race of some sort, but there were no number tags, just dozens of people out enjoying Texas. Spring in Texas is wonderful—wildflowers are everywhere and fill the roadsides for weeks and weeks.


screen printing with shaving cream

screen printing with shaving cream

My GPS didn’t know where John Cooper School was but after a bit of meandering I pulled into the main parking circle. The campus is beautiful with lots of trees, garden areas, and sculptures with benches and picnic tables. The art department was gorgeous, packed with samples of student work, tools, supplies, and works in progress. Some of the sculptures were student work, two really magnificent pieces were sculpted by Bob, our gracious host.




Ginny Eckley gave a condensed version of screen printing using dyes dispersed with shaving cream interspersed with information about silk and dyeing—well worth just sitting and absorbing. I left early, before show and tell—and Sallie’s presentation on press releases, but last night’s work was telling.



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