Happy Mothers Day. This is a portrait of my Great Grandmother done in graphite. I did this for my Mother a few years back. Grammie as we all called her, was the epitome of grace. She was pure love. Her strength was gentle and kind. She was effortlessly patient. In her presence one felt loved beyond all measure...words were not necessary. She has been gone from my life for 31 years now but her spirit is still felt. The comfort of sitting on her lap wrapped snug in a blanket in her rocking chair and watching the birds out of her window still remains a vivid example of what safety and home means.
Where does strength come from? Maybe for some the meaning of the word is completely different from mine. What do you think of when you visualize someone that embodies the word strength? In this phase of my life strength comes from a gentle quiet space within. One that is calm and can navigate the world gracefully. It is not always easy.
Early this March I was lucky enough to go and spend some time with not family but like family in the Boston area. Spiritual kin I would call them. While I enjoyed Boston since I have huge love for that city, I also really enjoyed having some uninterrupted sketch time. This is the view outside the window where I was staying in North Andover. I fell in love with the trees there...so airy.
Sometimes it is nice to get back to basics and draw objects from life as you see them. For me it is like using the other side of my brain to do math...I have to really focus and concentrate on it. One of my favorite teachers always said "Make it sing..." as one was working on a painting. That's how we knew the painting was done, when it sang. I'm not so sure these images sing, they are not as delicate as I would have liked...I saw them as more airy. I think you can see my struggle in them to not get carried off in a tangent like my more intuitive work, but to stick to the path. Drawing realistically in graphite is a good exercise for me from time to time, it certainly keeps me humble.