Broken Mirrors

What do broken mirrors and plein air umbrellas have in common? I’ll explain. But first let me say I am not superstitious. Over the past two weeks I have broken two mirrors. For those who believe in bad karma associated with such a happening you might think I am headed for a double dose of bad luck. And on my way into town the other day a black cat darted out in front of my car. The cat made it across the road safely but was this yet another sign? Literally, lucky for me I just read that black cats are a sign of good luck. So not to worry.

While cleaning up the studio on Saturday, I can across a plethora of plein air umbrellas. It seems like in the quest for the perfect plein setup I have acquired more than my share of these things. A white one, a gray one, a vented one, a large one, a small one.  Some are stand alone models, some attachable. So to purge my stash I opened and closed each to see which one would be the keeper, and which would be relegated to the giveaway pile. And then a thought crossed my mind: should I be doing this inside? I reminded myself I am not superstitious.

On Sunday I caught up with my husband in Oregon. And when we got to our room I couldn’t help but notice the number on the door, 313. So is someone really trying to tell me something or is this just all a coincidence not worth concern?

But the real question I have for you is this. Has anyone found the perfect plein air umbrella?



7 Responses to “Broken Mirrors”

  1. Loriann Signori Says:

    I swear by my shade buddy. I have one in my car at all times and one stored in La Conner. Wouldn’t go anywhere without it.
    Rest assured, cats, especially black ones, only bring good luck. In fact there is one in my lap right now. Luck is what we make it, right?
    Will you be in LaConner this year at your usual hose?

    • Marianne Post Says:

      Loriann: Thanks for the reassurance that I am not doomed! And for the umbrella suggestion. I don’t have a “shade buddy” and maybe that is my problem!! No I won’t be at LaConner this year. Family gatherings at the exact same time. But I will get my “Richard” fix this September as he will be doing a workshop in the high sierras in No. California. Sorry to miss out this time around. Hopefully we can paint together in 2011 if not sooner.

  2. Katherine Kean Says:


    I think black cats are very lucky too, as is lucky 13. I have an easel or chair attachable white umbrella that I like a lot – it diffuses the light well and keeps me out of the sun at the same time.

    • Marianne Post Says:

      Katheriine: I have a white one, but it is pretty large. I find it very helpful for diffusing the light on my painting surface as well as my palette. But I am always a but nervous whenever the slightest breeze appears. Picking up a box full of over 200 pastels is a daunting task.

  3. Lorna Sheveland Says:

    Don’t worry. All those signs are just posting you that CHANGE is coming! Good change matched to your long-held dreams of a place in Oregon.

    Re: umbrellas, what are the characteristics of a good umbrella…..ones that you look for when buying one? I have a couple and neither one quite makes it for me! Lorna

    • Marianne Post Says:

      Lorna: I guess we are in the same predicament in our quest for the perfect plein air umbrella. I am leaning towards Loriann’s suggestion, the Shadebuddy by Guerilla Painter. Especially the stand alone model. The most treacherous feeling is when a breeze whips up and an attached umbrella to your easel threatens your pastels. It is really annoying to hang onto your easel with one hand while painting with the other. And usually that pesky breeze comes along just as you step back from the easel a few feet to view your progress and your reflexes don’t kick in soon enough to prevent a catastrophe. The down side is the stand means just one more piece of equipment to tote along.

  4. Loriann Signori Says:

    My shade buddy with its stand has sometimes taken off on its own…. without my pastels (yay!) One time I was painting at the river and a big gust took my shade buddy half way across the river. Loyal to my buddy I dove in and rescued it. It still comes with me everyday.
    I am going to miss you this year. whaaaaaaa.

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