Like The Queen
Whatever happens to strike my fancy, but surely some sort of fiber content.


I love to look at your paintings, Bess, and now, these wonderful examples from your mama! My mother never felt she was creative in any way: "a pattern knitter and a recipe cook", she called herself. Little did she realize how creative her cooking really was. I think with greater encouragement, she could have valued her creativity more...

Bless your mama!


By Blogger Marg, at 9:14 AM  

Oh, the "Nudes in Bikinis" and the story behind it, is just priceless! She's very talented, and what a funny, witty solution!

By Blogger Catherine, at 6:03 PM  

What beautiful paintings! I can see now that artistic talent runs in the family. What a fun way to circumvent contest rules and how touching that she painted your son's likeness to help you deal with his leaving home. Your mother seems like a very special lady.

By Blogger inukshuk71, at 3:02 PM  

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Tuesday, February 17, 2009  

An Extra Holiday

I am taking today off – and I may also take off tomorrow – because we may have snow – or what passes for snow in Virginia. MsHoroscope advises me:

Try to spend as much time in yourself as you can today and tomorrow. As I warned you about a week ago, the Sun is about to move into your 7th House of Other People, at which point you can expect to spend even more time thinking about other people than you already do! So take some advice from your Stars and get thee to the massage therapist today, or the hairdresser, or whoever it is (or wherever it is) that's going to make you feel relaxed (at least) and maybe even pampered.

So today I will paint in the morning and go to my weight lifting class in the afternoon and eat sauteed scallops for dinner.

The trip to the parents was sweet. I took my watercolors to mama who is my favorite watercolor artist. She was stimulated and excited and delighted that I had taken up her passion. We've made a date for a painting morning and we're both really looking forward to it.

Here are two of my favorites of her paintings – one because, of course, it's my PABDOS and it is also an example of the deep connection she and I have always felt. LD was my only chick and besides, we were simpatico – we have always understood each other. And I did not do Empty Nest with grace or dignity. It was all suffering. I was already begining to spiral down in his last year of high school and one day when I was visiting mama, there in her studio was this portrait. I hadn't known she was painting it but I knew exactly the photograph she used, the day the picture was taken ... and she captured him perfectly. She said “It's for you. I know you're having trouble and it will get worse before it gets better. I thought you needed this.”

Man – I still sort of reel when I remember that day and how much she loved me and how much she would go out of her way for me.

This other one is a favorite because it represents something special and magical about my mother and it also demonstrates one of the major lessons she taught me.

This was the last painting she did for public display. It was for a juried exhibit that would be hung in all the big financial buildings in downtown Richmond. Just days before the show, which was a contest with prizes, the word went out from the bankers that there were to be No Nudes on display. She really was suffering from all sorts of old age issues and she didn't have the energy to paint something else. So she took that bright origami paper and cut bikinis out of it and glued them onto the nudes with rubber cement.

The judging was done on local PBS TV so she actually got to watch as the judges went around discussing the winners. And hers was one of the winners. She told me she didn't think it was artistic enough to win – there were many finer paintings – she thinks she won because of her way of handling the No Nudes dilemma. And that is what I love about this painting. I could take the bikinis off but I never will. They are the lesson she taught me – that there is always a door in even the longest, highest brick wall.

Oh my it was fun to be her daughter.

posted by Bess | 7:45 AM