By Jon Wogen, TBC Board member and printed with permission from the Renville County Register
For many years, this scribe has noted that fall and early winter have been the best times for neat sunsets and sunrises.
One reason for this is the cloud formations. In October through December the clouds tend to form in layers. A layer of flat clouds, if positioned properly, can pick up the colors of the sunset and sunrise very well. Sometimes the flat layer of clouds can become orange, pink, bright red or other colors as the sun and atmosphere dictate.
These vibrant colors, made even more dramatic by the shapes of the layered clouds, can make for some great outdoor photography. And, many artists use the pictures they take to base a painting on later, maybe during the winter months.
I have envied artists. Their creativity is often incredible. Artists take photos of wildlife, old farm places, windmills, rolling hills, clouds, weeds, trees and prairie grasses. Then, back at home, they add the sunset as background and another subject close to the viewer.
It is amazing how an artist can produce a lasting and important memory of a great sunset and another object. Well, do you have a kid who might want to do some art? By purchasing a decent digital zoom camera, the kid can now start to gather and store images for art or for eventually illustrating a book he or she may want to write. Creativity is wonderful and can be somewhat developed. It doesn’t all come naturally, but can be improved.
Becoming an outdoor photographer and/or a painter of art can lead to a future career. A camera, a recorder, note pad and pen can be a start of something big down the road. The person can become a reporter for a newspaper or magazine.
Interest in writing, the outdoors, photography, and art can open the door to a pleasant and important career.
Yes, Christmas is a long way off, but a gift of this camera can be given early so the recipient can begin to see if he or she is truly interested in art and such. The young person will have several months of good sunset opportunities, along with leaf color and such. The leaves are falling quickly so don’t wait too long.
Would your young person be interested in taking an art class to learn about painting of outdoor scenes? You can give this as a gift too. You are certainly allowed to spoil a kid by giving him/her an early Christmas present too. If an interest in art is shown, you can buy art supplies, art paper, and such as supplemental gifts at any time.
SCOUTS AND 4-H
If anyone has had a kid in 4-H or Boy or Girl Scouts, you may have noticed that the kid was having fun and appeared to grow in many ways. These young people seem to develop more life skills and also seem to develop dexterity and expertise in using tools.
I have had several classes where the kids were taught how to make fishing tackle, like a jig-fly or pike spoon. Don’t laugh, but there were some kids of Junior High or upper elementary age who we needed to show how to use a scissors.
One wonders just how you get to be 12-14 years old and never learned about a scissors. Could it be the digital age we live in? With electronic or digital stuff, all you had to do was move the two thumbs over a small keyboard, or grip a computer game control in your hand.
Where has personal creativity gone? Think back to all the satisfaction you felt in making something artsy or crafty, or you knew how to build a fire in the snow in winter. In 4-H and Scouts, kids learn to be creative, independent, confident, and well-rounded people. In these youth groups, your kid can’t lose.
Scouts and 4-H are very good organizations that can play a big part in helping your kids to digitally detoxify themselves. Yes, for a short time, the kids won’t want or need a computer, cell phone, or electronic game.
We thought that you might be interested in getting your kids involved in these youth groups, so we decided to give you some names of their leaders. These people are volunteers. They will need your support to make things happen for your kid. You actually join 4-H and Scouts WITH your kid. That is an important concept in these groups. If your town has these Scout groups, find out who the leaders are.
Olivia Boy scouts: Tom McDonnell; Cub Scouts: Mark Jurgensen; Girl Scouts: Heather Thompson; 4-H leaders: Birch Coulee, Molly and Tom Lorang; Danube Full-o-Pep, Diane Adamski and Cameo VanHorn; Bird Island Town and Country, Peggy Uhlenkamp; Renville Aces, Carol Engstrom; Boon Lake Orioles, Cindy Grams; Sacred Heart Eager Beavers, Marie Hoff; Cairo Sharpshooters, Mary Peichel; Trailblazers, Karen Roker.
If you need the contact information for the 4-H leaders, contact me (320-523-2752). I have no information on Scouts in other County areas so if you live in Renville County Towns, you can ask around to see if there is a Scout unit in your town.