|"Three Gulls" Pastel on paper 10" x 8"|
For Mario, life was precious and his family was precious. So we who are left, by his example, know what we must do: We must value each day, and cherish our loved ones, until the very moment that our own stories end.
Mario loved the sea, perhaps more than anything. So as a fitting tribute, my wife and I went to the beach at Key Biscayne a day or so after his funeral. He used to bring his daughters there as children. Although we live in Miami, we almost never go to the beach.
I brought my watercolors and tried to paint what I saw. I tried to balance everything on my lap, brushes, paint, palette. Occasionally I would drop a brush in the sand. Sand was everywhere. The watercolor was a disaster.
So off and on in the days thereafter, I laid in a pastel over the watercolor. It was never quite right, so I worked and re-worked it. I noted that the best pastelists don't appear to smear too much, but leave their marks confident and bold. There is also a tremendous overlay of color in the best works.
I did not want to post until I had a work that would be a proper tribute for Mario. So today I made changes again. I don't believe I achieved my aim. I will try again one day. But in the meantime, here it is.