Saturday, January 21, 2012


"Barry Creek Cache"
color pencil drawing - 6X11" - © Bruce A. Morrison
(click on image for a larger view)

The word "cache" is defined as a place of storage, or hide away.  When I think of "cache" I think of a trapper's cache in Canada or know, those neat log cabins built up on stilts so the bears can't get into their provisions!  I painted one of those about 40 odd years ago and it really wasn't a terribly bad attempt :) That was in my "Northwoods Wilderness" days and all I could think of or do related to a life of the voyageur!  Oh, things do change...I guess I 'm as fickle at times as the next person, but the prairie is my final destination by choice and preference...its truly home to me!

Some synonyms for cache are store, deposit, hoard, reserve...the "store" and "deposit" likely best describe what is going on in my latest color pencil study above.  There are places that can be found on many farmsteads of the past and even the present, where you'll see things heaped away from the homes or buildings.  Things like old rolls of barbed wire, cans, tin, scraped cars or trucks, and so on.  These "caches" as I like to call them, are usually long forgotten and no longer used depositories of worn out and no longer useful things.  Most people would simply call them "dumps", albeit small.

These caches are places usually long out-of-use, and grown up with mulberry, ashes, elms and cottonwood trees...hidden from view during the spring, summer and early fall...come winter - its a look back in time when all is again revealed; although more obscured than in plain view.  And most caches are no longer used (added to) as nowadays trash removal and recycling/salvage are common place...a hundred to 75 years ago that wasn't the case.

They may be "dumps" to some but I see them as a storage of past lives and ambitions...broken or failed dreams, or even the excess of success, if-you-will. These are the archeological sites of centuries far into the future...sites for that short burst of civilization just tipping the balance after the industrial revolution moved to the new world.

"Barry Creek Cache" is from the "neighborhood here in SE O'Brien County...a short tick down the road from the studio.  Its a lovely late summer afternoon with lengthening shadows; the cattle have begun grazing again after a hot mid day respite.  The creek is in no hurry now, there hasn't been rain in weeks...the grasses are no longer flourishing but green still stubbornly persists.  

"Barry Creek Cache" is a story; each piece I draw, paint or photograph is a story...I can sit and tell you stories here on this blog, or you can see and hear them here in the studio, "until the cows come home"!  Please don't be in a hurry though, I'd love to hear your stories too!


leon said...

Brillint work!! How long did this picture take to complete?

Prairie Painter said...

Thank you Leon; I don't usually log the time on these small drawings but I believe it was between 6-7 weeks (?). I just draw during the evenings and not during the day...I'm too busy working on other projects during the day.