Ward Chronicles - Volume 6

Inspirational is the word that best describes Easton Mountain for me. It inspires me to explore, hike, swim- and most of all, to paint, do photography and write. I am an artist and it is one of my muses. What is a muse? In classic Greek mythology there were nine of them... all  women. They inspired great works in the sciences, literature, and most of all, the arts.

At Easton Mountain, where lines blur, I choose to think of my muses in the Man_Catchermasculine sense. One of the greatest gifts of this mountain has been the many creative men I have met here- men who have inspired me and men who I have inspired. Yes, I have had the great pleasure of  being a muse here at Easton. One night photographer Ross MacDonald, myself, and 9 others invented the "Penguin Pile" - similar to a puppy pile, only done standing! While "Penguining" we mused what our tribe would be like if we were Indians- and hilarity ensued. Instead of ponies we would ride pink flamingos! Our war paint would be eye shadow and our medicine man would know how to do botox! You get the picture. That night, I dreamed of a great spirit who instructed me to make a "man catcher"...similar to a dream catcher only bigger and used to, as the name implies, catch men. I made it the very next morning. while dressed in cowboy drag. PaulI was seen walking through the forest with it by noted New England landscape artist David Brewster who asked me to sit for a portrait that very morning. He called the piece "Man Catcher." The only gift greater than making a work of art is inspiring one. Hand of GodI was deeply honored to be his subject, his muse. I have since posed for 3 more of his oil portraits. I was also muse to photographer Giovanni Di Mola who I took to see the Cobb House, a mud and straw structure that has a medieval "Hobbit" feel to it. He loved the light and had me sit for a photo in a time-lapse series called "Di Ritardo" (The Delay) which evokes the chiaroscuro of a painting by Caravaggio. Giovanni is a true master of his medium. It felt almost "religious" to be a part of his process. Poet Scott Harris used me as inspiration for one of his works which now hangs on my door, framed in tree branches and crystals... fitting for a poem titled "Ward the Glitter Elf". I find myself inspired by men and nature. I go to them as the bee goes to a flower for a nectar I can make into my own honey. I have constructed a golden phone that hangs outside my cabin on which I can "Call God." I have taken angelic photos of my ghosty pic giogood friend Paul Tomilson, and every morning I write in the hours between sleep and awake...the place where dreams still live. When I let go and let God, he guides my hand, and art happens. Art often happens on Easton Mountain. It is my muse.