Every year around this time I find myself on the lookout for that first little bit of orange at the green grocers, usually in the form of mini pumpkins. Then follow the larger pumpkins and decorative gourds soon after. It truly marks the beginning of autumn which is my favorite time of year. Last year I was wandering through the farmer's market in Fort Greene, Brooklyn and I found a treasure trove of the most beautiful decorative gourds! I bought a whole bunch and they inspired me to paint this Pumpkin Varieties Chart to help usher in the season. Just looking at these makes me smell the wood smoke and feel the chill in the air. Soon it will even be time to pull out my vintage Halloween decorations and begin carving a pumpkin. I like to try out different faces each year, usually scary and since it is always so hard to decide upon one, I thought I would do a painting of all sorts of Jack O Lantern faces, some scary and some friendly. I added in a black scroll border complete with crows to finish it off! Both paintings are available as prints in my Etsy shop The Curious Kitchen.
I have always been interested in anthropomorphic fruit and veggies. I love giving them faces, arms & legs. Essentially giving them personalities. When I was a kid I used to collect acorns and make little people with them using pipe cleaners and painting faces on them. Well last week I was out jogging by the Hudson and saw the acorns were ready and falling from the trees so I collected a bunch to give to my squirrels. (The ones I feed from my fire escape). I kept looking at the bowl full of them, admiring their smooth brown surfaces and remembering how I used to love them. That was what inspired me to immortalize one in a painting. To honor the humble acorn, a true symbol of autumn.