March 28, 2011

portrait artist

I was most fortunate to have my portrait rendered this weekend by an artist simply known as A. Although this artist has never taken a drawing class, never studied color theory, and is not the least bit concerned with the "rules" that govern shapes, values, composition, line, form, and function; I can assure you that, at age five, she understands all there is to know about the creative process. Eliminating judgement and worry that her work may not be "good enough"; she intuitively understands the importance of rendering the essence of her subject.
My artist began by pointing out what she sees in me (my love of painting, the fact that my favorite red lipstick is more pink than red, how my eyes sometimes look blue/sometimes green depending on what I am wearing, and last but not least, how we both agree that the most important criteria for choosing a great skirt is whether or not it "twirls" when you walk). If you look closely at her depiction of the painting on the easel, you will see that she has drawn the two of us holding hands, and simply written "you/me" - an economy of words that say everything. The best artist for the job may not be the one with the most technical skill or years of study under her belt. She will not be focused on the shape of your lips, but on the warmth of your smile. She is the one who always "gets you" - and the one who sees and paints your spirit.

"Each second we live is a new and unique moment of the universe,
a moment that will never be again.
And what do we teach our children?
We teach them that two and two make four and that Paris is the capital of France.
When will we also teach them what they are? We should say to each of them:
Do you know what you are?
You are a marvel.
You are unique.
In all the years that have passed, there has never been another child like you.
Your legs, your arms, your clever fingers, the way you move.
You may become a Shakespeare, a Michelangelo, a Beethoven.
You have the capacity for anything. Yes, you are a marvel.
And when you grow up, can you then harm another, who is like you, a marvel?
You must work, we must all work, to make the world worthy of its children"
Pablo Picasso

March 23, 2011

a trip down memory lane

"Walnut Grove" for JCP
6" x 12" oil on canvas

My sister, brother and I played among these walnut trees as children and relished the boundless magic endemic to our grandparents' home and farmland.
Just over the hill was a fragrant apple orchard - the thought of which always reminds me of this wise old Welsh Proverb:

"A seed hidden in the heart of an apple is an orchard invisible"

...and this most enchanting observation by Rabindranath Tagore- who surely knew a thing or two about magic, wonder, and the infinite charm of nature:

"The touch of an infinite mystery passes over the trivial and the familiar,
making it break out into ineffable music...
The trees,
the stars,
and the blue hills
ache with a meaning
which can never be uttered in words"

March 19, 2011

the daily round

12 x 16, watercolor

"We should return home from adventures,
and perils and discoveries every day
with new experience and character."
Henry David Thoreau

March 2, 2011

Enchantment by the Sea

12 x 16, oil on canvas

"There is a garden in every childhood,
an enchanted place where colors are brighter,
the air softer,
and the morning more fragrant than ever again"
Elizabeth Lawrence