Thursday, January 26, 2012


Bugged, watercolor on Arches, 13x14
Five years ago I dreamed I was at a party; a huge bug was attached to my back, and no one noticed.  I thought the dream was odd; I sketched it while half-asleep.

I found the sketch tucked in a drawer and began the painting three weeks ago in a playful mood.  I thought I'd try a bit of everything with watercolor--masking with torn painters' tape, washes, scrubbing, glazes, muddy colors.  As the painting progressed, however, I realized the subject wasn't really funny--that I was painting my life.  I'm always bugged by something but I smile or joke my way through--so how would anyone know I'm upset?

Art--cheaper than psychiatry.  Now I'm really bugged.

The woman looks a bit like Miss Kitty from Gunsmoke or Margaret Thatcher and has quite a long arm reaching for that wine.  I don't think wine will debug me--don't like the taste or the headache.  I'll just have to keep painting; it usually helps.
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Sunday, January 8, 2012

He Walked

He Walked, watercolor on arches, 10x12
I picked him up about ten miles outside town.  It was shortly after the 9/11 attack and I had been listening to CNN coverage on my car radio.  I said, "It was terrible what happened in New York."  He said, "I didn't do it." 
He didn't want me to drive him home so he got out of my car at the traffic light in town and began walking west--he had seven miles to go.  Maybe he got another ride; maybe not.
I miss seeing him on the road.  I imagine he still walks but no longer needs his cane and his back is straight.

(My mother taught me that whatever one does on New Year's Day, one does for the rest of the year so I began this painting at 10 p.m. on January 1.)
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Thursday, January 5, 2012

Awards and a Visit with Rembrandt

I received a comment from SamArtDog.  She said "Your blog is a treasure so I am passing along an award to you, The Liebster Blog Award."  Your words, Sam, are all the award I need.    I am honored, especially since your blog is one that I treasure. Sam has a mix of wonderful pastels, acrylics, the first iPhone paintings I ever saw, and photographs of a part of America I've never visited.  I suspect that Sam has picked up a bit of "Southern" along the way--I think she likes my stories.  Thank you, Sam.

Earlier, in November, Donna Iona Drozda named me as one of her 7 links.  That was an honor, too--Donna's blog has wonderful paintings of women and beautiful wildlife; she encourages honoring the earth and following the cycles of the moon.  I am usually slightly out of step but Donna and I read some of the same books back in the 70s so I feel part of the group.  I failed to follow through on that award, too. Thank you, Donna.

And there were some earlier awards I didn't pick up.  

Maybe I am just too content arting around here in southern Virginia and blogging about it.  The best part of blogging is what I've learned from other bloggers.   I considered adding a "No awards please" to the sidebar but it seemed a bit pretentious, especially since I hadn't received any at that time. 

Yesterday, I arted around by visiting the Rembrandt exhibit in Raleigh.  I think he may be a relative.

Rembrandt's self-portrait at age 65

My self-portrait at around 65 (white conte on black paper)
Notice the resemblence?  His portrait of his red-haired sister reminded me of myself as a child, too. 
Tonight, I've spent several hours sitting in front of the webcam, wearing a black fur hat (with the name James Hunter sewn inside), shining a flashlight on my face, trying to look like Rembrandt.  I thought it would work but the flashlight washes out my wrinkles!  Maybe I need a mustache.

I'm keeping the hat on for taking the trash to the curb.  I haven't received my down coat yet--I guess the Eddie Bauer people are hung over from the holidays.  AND I paid for shipping--should have waited; they were offering free shipping today.
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