The backhoe driver digs around the tree in the center of the lot. (The pink background was already there from playing with acrylic ink the night before.)
After digging around the tree, the backhoe driver pushed the entire tree over with the backhoe. This is the top of the tree on the ground.
Another worker plays on the swing as two other workers prepare to take that tree down.
The backhoe driver breaks apart the first tree and starts making a big pile.
The worker in the cherry picker removes limbs from the swing tree with a chainsaw.
The swing is gone.
The backhoe driver starts digging around the swing tree, but stops to try, unsuccessfully, to help one of the workers who is stuck in the cherry picker. He has to wait for the others to return from Home Depot.
The swing tree comes down. The backhoe driver dug around it and pushed it over, like the tree in the center. The workers immediately started to trim it down with the chainsaw so that the backhoe driver could add the pieces to the pile.
Also throughout the day the backhoe driver started taking down the magnolia in the top right of this sketch by grabbing big sections with the backhoe and pulling. The tree workers also started taking down branches from the tree on the corner with the chainsaw. At some point they took the cherry picker away.
A note about the lot: This was the last open space in the neighborhood. The area where we live was once a lake with one big house (we think it was the house that is directly behind this lot), and over time the family that owned the land started selling off lots, and then filled in the lake to sell even more lots. During my childhood, the big house still stood on at least three lots (probably more), including this one, the subject of this post. I have a vague memory of being in the yard where these trees stood, because the people who lived there didn't mind neighborhood kids playing in their yard.
A note about materials: Stillman & Birn Epsilon 8.5x5.5 sketchbook with a Sakura Pigma Graphic 1 pen, Pentel ink brush pen, Royal Talens Ecoline brush pens in light orange and light green, Faber Castell Polychromos colored pencil in burnt ochre, and Prismacolor Premier colored pencil in neon pink. I made the sketches with the Graphic 1 either at my window or on my front porch, then returned to my studio to add color. Because this was all happening so quickly, I picked colors to represent different things - green for the trees on the corner and in the center, dark gray ink for the magnolia, and a combination of the orange brush pen and neon pink colored pencil for the construction fence.
They're back at it today and so am I.
Here are all of the two-page spreads.
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