Painting and Illustration
My mother took a few art classes in high school. In her later years, she took a few more classes at a community college in Central California. The years in between she practiced her art as a hobby and raised six children. In quiet times past, my younger sister and I would sit at her feet and play with our coloring books. At about age five and being two and a half years older than my sister, I generously gave my sibling the benefit of my advanced expertise in the fine art of coloring within the lines. Amused, my mother picked up our crayons and quickly sketched us. When she was done, she showed us the finished product.
I was utterly amazed! There, without a doubt, was my pudgy baby sister, sitting cross-legged in the fashion that helped her maintain an upright posture, gripping her crayon in a fist that physically prevented ever getting color on paper. I was depicted with my mouth open, intent on my image, but giving an unending stream of advice. Everything in the picture captured that moment in time perfectly, with love, with soft hues, with accuracy and with obvious, undeniable talent. Even to a five year old.
I wanted it. I desired it. I craved it instantly and with a passion I did not fully understand. I wanted to possess it more than anything I had ever wanted in my short sojourn on this planet. Not the picture. I wanted her ability. I wanted to do what she had just done.
And so I was driven from that moment to capture a portion of her talent. Always thinking my artwork could not quite compare. Striving always to do better. Never entirely satisfied with the final product and hoping other folks wouldn’t notice the flaws glaring out at me.
After I retired from fifty years of nursing, I joined The Broadway Gallery and was so tickled they accepted me as a member. I see their striking works and again, quite often, I feel the same desire I felt at my mother’s feet.
So, what precisely is the origin of my soulful, passionate, driven artistic inspiration? Why…it’s envy. It’s a greedy, grasping, immature emotion that keeps me dissatisfied. It pushes and prods me to try to be as talented as all those countless artists I envy.