"Life is a great big canvas, and you should throw all the paint on it you can." - Danny Kaye
Thursday, December 31, 2009
Our Tilted World
I've been away from this blog for eighteen whole days since my last post, and it's felt like forever. As Ellen so elequently described my family's last few months in her kind note: "Sometimes it seems like the world has just tipped over and none of those close to us can get their footing." And it has been just like that.
Thankfully, though, those I love are coping with their losses, as hard as they are, and overcoming their illnesses and dealing with their medical conditions. They are resilient and strong and admirable. At their age, octogenarians, they should be relaxing and enjoying, but that is not the way it is, apparently, and some of their greatest challenges occur in those years.
I should have realized this, of course. That this is not the way it is. The world is, after all, tilted. To be precise, our Earth has a tilt of 22.4 degrees. Not a single globe on this earth is upright. A reminder for the new year, I think. Each year we want the next year to be perfect. But it never is, of course.
Why not? Because our world is tilted.
And I can live with that. I have to. In fact, I want to.
All in all, 2009 has been a good year. I started my blog in March 2009 and returned to art after a quarter of a century. I have made new friends online - wonderful friends - you have been so encouraging, and I am more grateful than I can say. I have learned much, and have so opened the floodgates of creativity that it is sometimes hard to think about anything else. The blog has fed the art, and the art has fed the blog. I began painting in watercolors, and learn more about the medium each day. And I so appreciate the warm wishes all of you sent my way when things grew a bit harder.
Today I am excited about 2010. So many possibilities. There are so many, I don't know which way to go! The world wobbles as it turns, don't you think? The drawing above is a fun development for me. I've been drawing with waterproof ink. Above, I tried using water soluble ink intentionally, first drawing with the pen and then using a brush to spread the ink. How can I use this?! I can't wait to explore.
I have a new, artist quality set of watercolors that I am just beginning to use. I will continue to sketch in public. I sketched the gentleman on the left through a window, although I colored it later with the new paints. After I sketched this man - I call him Boris - I handed the drawing to my 9-year-old nephew Jake. Jake walked straight to the window directly in front of Boris, looked down at the drawing, up at Boris, down at the drawing, and up at Boris again. Tell me, do you think the man noticed? What a hoot! Somehow there is always a surprise when I sketch in public.
I have been totally taken lately with the Helga paintings of Andrew Wyeth. His watercolors have depth, atmosphere, feeling. He uses a dry brush technique, which I would like to explore. I have spent hours staring at his sketches, studies and finished paintings in the book, Andrew Wyeth: The Helga Pictures, by John Wilmerding. You can almost see how he does it. Almost, but not quite. He uses pencil, and then paints, so I decided to do the drawing on the right at the same restaurant as Boris in pencil, rather than in pen, as a first attempt. I expect to do more of this.
I am glad that the world is tilted. So many facets, so many angles, so many possibilities! There is nothing dull about it! So much to think about, and so much to do!
Happy New Year! May you perch yourself on your tilted world and laugh at the joy of it in 2010!
Swerving along the artistic road with every sight a potential target. * * * If you'd like to contact me about any of the art that you see - about purchases, commissions or just to say hello - feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I'd love to hear from you!