Colour Blob Design posted her photograph of a Queen's Anne Lace here and said the magic words "you can use it" and "I would love to see what and how you would create it on paper."
So today, when I was going to be out and about and it looked like I would have some time to paint, I quickly printed her photograph and took it with me.
Now, I don't know what Queen's Anne Lace is, and have no idea if I've ever seen it, so this was to be something like Durer sketching a rhinoceros. Except I had a photo of course.
The photo brought to mind when I used to run around as a boy in the field behind our block. There were small ankle-high scraggly weeds with tufts of cotton-like wisps that would sometimes catch a breeze and float in the air. At least that's how I remember it.
That was how I saw this plant. I could see the whole thing floating along in the wind. I toyed with painting it that way.
So doing my due diligence, never having seen a Q.A.L. before, I used my cell phone to bring up images of Queen Anne's Lace. There was momentary confusion when I saw beautiful small petaled white flowers. There were none in the photo - but that's okay. I had a photograph, and photos never lie, do they?
So I painted my wispy Queen Anne's Lace. I was very satisfied. I am still satisfied.
But I had forgotten where Mari lives. She is in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. She said it was a "fantastic winter day" when she took this photo. It was -5 degrees Celsius (which is 20 degrees Fahrenheit) so what I took for cotton-like wisps were balls of ice!! Those dark scraggly dead stalks were where the flowers should have been.
What do I know? I'm a Floridian!
As you know, I love drawing people. Then comes the time to paint, which I also love. I had the sketch of the guy to the right in my sketchbook, and the other day another gentleman sat down in a small eating establishment in just the right spot -and he was involved in a conversation. And the skin tones were just right. There is no substitute for a live model. I managed to finish before he got up to leave.
And it just so happens that as he was leaving, he glanced down at my sketch. He was delighted! He told me how much he liked it and proudly announced that he had a BFA from such-and-such a school and did computer animation! That was the first time that anything like that had ever happened to me. He was so awfully nice that I almost told him that the skin color on this man was his! Then I thought that that bit of info might be better disclosed on another day.
The model for the sketch (not the painting) moved around a lot. This accounts for the odd positions of the arms. What is he doing? I don't know! Conjuring flowers?
What is he holding? Beats me! Is it a tv remote? A Wii controller? I hope not.
I think this is why artists say haughtily, "I leave it to the viewer to interpret my work." [Clear throat]. So if you have any idea what he is doing, or what is in his hand, or what I can put in his hand, please let me know, dear viewer, because you know better than me.
A few days after painting that sketch I was at Einstein's Bagels, sitting outside, painting another of my sketches. Another man walked by. This guy got so excited and he too proudly announced his degree in art - such-and-such a school, and all that! That's twice in one week!
He said, "I'd have expected you to be at a cafe', not here."
"I am. This is a poor man's cafe'" I said. In fact, I added, "I've yet to see anyone else doing what I'm doing anywhere in Miami, have you?"
"Come to think of it, I haven't!" he responded.
So tell me, where are all the other Miami artists? Why aren't they out and about sketching at every eating establishment like the artists in Toronto or in Portland? Or in public with their easels?
It's not as if the weather isn't good. Right Mari? Right?
3 years ago