While I was away from the studio for nearly three weeks I fell back into nature for inspiration as I witnessed the birth of yet another New England spring. My parents live a few miles from the ocean yet it was the sounds of the wind through the tall fir trees while sitting alone on the back deck one evening that caught my heart and pulled my eyes upward to catch the sun dancing within the swaying branches. I tilted my head back, closed my eyes and let my soul rock like a babe in her mother's arms. I don't know the name of the magic trees that sound like ocean waves in the wind but I know I will never forget how wonderful this place is because of them.
These moments rekindled my passion for writing which I found both a curse and a blessing. The expectations we creatives put on ourselves is such a curse - we think we should be able to pick up our (brush/pen/golf club/spatula/skis/what have you) and after much time away be just wonderful again. Yet the simple act of doing brought great joy for it is in these moments that we see that we are all blessed in a million small ways.
Now this is not to say I didn't try to paint while away. My mom has a small studio set up in an upstairs bedroom and my dad has a more extensive studio set up in the basement and I used both.
One of my favorite's from my mom's sold paintings.
When my parents first retired and moved to Cape Cod in 1985 they started painting again. For my mom it had been a 40 year hiatus and yet after a few quick months she was painting really wonderful landscapes and portraits (see example above) and spent many successful years on the Cape summer art show circuit. Mom still paints today, though on a limited scale, and when I arrived sitting on her easel was a wonderful small landscape. I was relaxing there into the nice light when I picked up one of the small blank 8 x 10 canvases and starting pushing some paint around and got lost for awhile.
Later that week I thought it best to try my dad's basement studio. Dad has painted on and off for most of his life and had a small studio set up in the basement of my childhood home that I liked to visit. Below is one of his landscapes and you can also see examples of his older works on the walls in the "studio" photograph. It was fairly easy to get myself set up and after I turned up my favorite painting music I was able to complete an underpainting of a portrait there.
Above: One of my dad's Cape landscape paintings.
Below: Glimpse of dad's studio with a variety of his older works.
Now that I'm back in the Hollingsworth Gallery painting studios it is wonderful to see familiar faces and get hugs and kind words from my art family and review my works in progress. I will sit and stare at the current projects awhile until they tell me what to do next. In the meantime I have started some new projects and will share soon. To my friends, fans and readers a big thank you for your support and friendship. Java!
P.S. It was my mom that started me on the art journey. She sat me down in the living room one day and gave me a sketch pad and placed one red apple in the middle of the table and said, draw this. I think one of my brother's was there when we started but soon left. I don't remember how well that session went but I remember hiding upstairs in my room as a young child drawing either the "lumberjack" or "pinky." Remember these? They were in the backs of magazines accompanied by the words, "if you can draw "pinky" (a portrait of bambi) we want you!" I bet I could still draw them both right here and now.