Friday, January 2, 2015

Learning to Fly in 2015

I can't believe it's been two months since my last post... but, considering how fast the holidays flew by, I guess it makes sense. In November and December I buckled down to meet some commission deadlines. Then our little family (the dog, too) made the 1000-mile road trip home to Wisconsin for 10 days over Christmas. Cece and I both got sick with a nasty cold--you know, the kind that makes you feel like there's a cheese grater in the back of your throat, and the coughing fits at night prevent you from getting any rest at all. I had to whisper all day on Christmas Eve, as my voice gave out. Then when we arrived home, instead of being a go-getter on New Year's Day and whipping out a "first painting of 2015" like many accomplished artists I know... I sat around in my pajamas with my family, opened Christmas cards, and ate breakfast food for dinner. :-)

I am still recovering, and being forced to rest. But on a very positive note...
...At under 8 months old, Cecelia has started crawling! I'm glad I got in one last painting of her before she became completely mobile! During occasional breaks from commissioned work last month, I created this piece of my daughter.

"Fledglings" - 20x24 - oil on linen - Available

 "Fledglings" (detail)

I wanted to capture Cece's developmental milestones in this painting, while celebrating the beauty and innocence of infancy (and that buttery soft baby skin!). On a broader theme, we all have to start from the beginning. It's only a matter of time (and persistence!) before we learn how to fly.

The painting is simple, but I added certain details with intention. The fledgling sparrow and Cecelia both have some crazy, wispy baby hair. The paper airplanes (courtesy of my husband!) uplift the painting's narrative, while adding more diagonals to the design. They also provide some subtle tones to balance the background against the bright local colors of the play mat. I took a risk in painting my daughter on such a boldly colored mat, but I decided that it adds a fresh and contemporary twist to what might have been misconstrued as just another "cherub" painting. It also offers a plethora of bright reflected color on Cece's skin, which was such a joy to paint!

While I have no idea what adventures 2015 will bring, I do know that I am exactly where I'm supposed to be. Instead of making a ridiculously long list of goals like I usually do, I intend to spend each day of this year living with purpose and a positive attitude. As Cece moves from crawling to walking, it will get much harder to paint on a regular basis, but I will spend the time I have at the easel with the utmost focus. I will enjoy these early months with my daughter. I will continue improving my mind, body, and spirit. And I will not waste my time wondering what life would be like "if only..."

Happy New Year, everyone. 2015 is a blank canvas waiting to become a masterpiece!  



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