Blue Trees in Moonlight (2009), wall tiles approximately 17 x 7 inches. I textured the trees with a needle tool. When I first started working with clay I only needed a few simple tools. The clay is Rod's Mix and I've used a blue flambe glaze and they are fired cone 10 in reduction. The trees look like they are basking in the moonlight, the way the glaze broke on the texture. I remember the woman who purchased them was Asian. Not that race makes a difference but I think the tiles have an Asian influence.
When I was young oak trees, Quercus, were my favorite. When I moved to the mountains in California the Pacific madrone, a broadleaf evergreen, Arbutus menziesii, became my new favorite. When I went back to college and took plant identification many trees became my favorite, especially the dawn redwood, Metasequoia glyptostroboides. The botanical name just rolls off the tongue. The dawn redwood is an evergreen but it's needles turn a burnt orange in winter and then they fall. Sometimes folks think the tree may have died but it's just dormant for the winter.
You can recognize the dawn redwood by it's perfect pyramid shape, it's feathery needles, and it's deeply furrowed bark if left to grow unlimbed. Thought to be extinct the dawn redwood was rediscovered in China in the late 1940s. Seed for the tree were distributed here in the United States in 1948. The tree is hardy to Zone 5, is fast growing, and can withstand damp conditions. There are dawn redwood specimen trees throughout the country, if you visit an arboretum ask if they have one planted.
I read somewhere trees relax their branches and leaves at night to give them a rest. During the day they hold their branches more upright to optimize sun exposure. Today is going to be a really warm day and I plan to prune my fruit trees. Hope you remembered to say white rabbit yesterday. Thanks for reading and for all your comments.