Sometimes, things are not what they seem. 38x50, acrylic and gouache on paper.
Friday, March 20, 2015
The other night Oscar and I walked to the park after supper. It was unseasonably 72 degrees at 5:30pm. At the park there were two moms sitting on the bench and 4 kids playing and running in a pack. Oscar ran right up to them and asked to join them. They broke off into teams and made all kinds of strategic plans behind bushes and shrubs. I stood next to a small tree, Oscar's bike under my feet, the sun on my face, the warm breeze on my skin. I was within ear shot of the two women and I caught myself listening to them pretty intently. They discussed their homes and one was about to move into a new home, with a three car garage and lots of closet space. I shifted my weight, listened to the kids play and smiled at Oscar's extroverted ways which are so foreign to me. It occurred to me that these women are my age; two kids, a husband, big homes with lots of closets and room for more than one car and I had one of those "how did I get here?" moments.
I've always been one to have a vision. I knew what I wanted when I was young and I set out to get it. I wanted to live a life full of art and travels and I wanted a life partner. I was 19 when I met my ex-husband and for a good 12 years we did live a life full of art and travel. The only thing missing in our relationship was love. But like all dysfunctional relationships, you keep going through the motions. You don't talk about what is wrong. You hold in your anger. You don't fight. You just keep going. And like a leaky faucet eating away the enamel; drip. drip. drip. Corrosion. You don't even realize it is happening until the damage is already done. Until 13 years later, the earth stops spinning for a few seconds while your husband is saying "I never really loved you" when you are holding your two week old child and you are sick from mastitis. Then you scramble like hell to fix it because you've spent your entire life building it. It's all you've ever known. But it's over. The lies and anger have all come unraveled and the life you were living is over.
I stood in the park, oversimplifying the women on the bench. What-ifs rush at me and I just wish I could start over. Hit reset. All those choices. I want to go back. Go back to the day 15 years ago when Miriam Patchen and I ate Sara Lee cheesecake in her kitchen and she asked me to move in with her, but I told her I couldn't because I was moving in with my boyfriend.
I yelled for Oscar that it was time to go. He surprisingly said Okay and ran up to me and got on his bike. We headed home to begin our nighttime routine of bath and story time. The sun made everything glow. We listened to the birds and motorcycles and chirping squirrels.
Now. Supermoon Solar Eclipse Equinox. Oscar and I spent the day celebrating this amazing line-up by working in the garden, cleaning up and prepping it for new growth. A few days ago, Pixie Lighthorse posted the following questions on her Instagram page. "Who are you becoming as a result of what you're willing to release? How can you illuminate your divine path on this earth?"
This is exactly where I am. Letting go of things that no longer serve me, so that I may grab onto things that give me strength. I am a mother and an artist. How can I be better at both? Patience with myself and patience with my son. Lots of deep breaths and confidence that things will get better.
The other day at the breakfast table, Oscar asked me "Mom, are we dreaming?" I just smiled and said "I think it's quite possible, because sometimes, things are not what they seem.."
Sunday, February 22, 2015
We are approaching the end of February and hopefully experiencing our last below freezing wind chills. I have not done much writing here in the past year. Looking back, loosing my dad, my uncle, being in a car crash, I could safely write about these experiences. Post divorce issues; not getting along with my ex, loosing a family because of divorce, loosing my home because of divorce, these are not easy topics for me to address. Attorney's and court rooms and obligations not met. SO MUCH emotion and anger and past regrets. So many times in the past year, driving through these beautiful country roads, I ask myself "How did I get here?" There is so much of this that I don't want. I just want things to be simple and they are not, and never will be.
My parents divorced when I was 3, the same age my son was when his dad and I "officially" got divorced. Although it was well over much before I was pregnant, 10 years of co-dependency and bad habits. When I was growing up my families lived in the same small town. My mom got along with my dad's parents, and would often be invited in for pie and coffee. There was never any negative energy. My families spoke fondly of one another. And the best part, I had both my families. Everyone lived in the same place. I spent every other weekend with my dad. My parents didn't hang out, but they also didn't avoid one another. Of course, there was no facebook, no cell phones. If you wanted to contact someone, you called, and left a message on the answering machine. And then they called you back.
I live in Wisconsin. This is where my ex is from and where his family lives and that's why I am here. This is where our child was born. So this is where we live. I'm lucky to have good friends here. This world can be a mean place. I'm damn lucky to have good friends, a powerfully supportive mom, a strong, honest man who loves me, and a few paintings to finish. One of the best joys I have right now, is when I bring my son home after he has been away with his dad, and he says "Did you make a new painting while I was gone?" as he walks over to my painting spot to see for himself. I think he is my biggest fan.
It's going to be a big year. My son and I will move to a small apartment. He will begin kindergarden. I will continue to paint, drink too much tea and probably spend too much time wishing things were just a *little* different.
Thursday, November 13, 2014
I am offering a discounted price to those who commission me to paint a portrait no later than November 24. This is in celebration of the body of work I have created in the past year. I am so thankful for those that have given me the opportunity to do something I love. Please contact me no later than the 24th to get details!
The above is a portrait of a famous Irish Terrier named Wuss. Here is the great review I received from the owner:
Monday, August 25, 2014
I'm super excited to announce the opening of the new restaurant Wendigo in downtown Stoughton! I'm double excited to announce that my wild animal portraits are adorning the walls! For more information and to make reservations, check out the Wendigo Facebook page.
If you are in the Central Illinois area, I am sharing display space with Lumbering Behemoth at a new pet shop called Fetcher's, located in the old post office in Charleston, Illinois. Jim, my super talented and loving boyfriend, is the talent behind Lumbering Behemoth. He designed the columns and arches for the new store *and* he is displaying his beautiful handmade furniture and lamps.
Friday, July 25, 2014
Summer is flying by, as usual. It's almost August and much as I love Autumn, I must admit after our last winter, I'm a little weary! This summer has been wonderful and so jam-packed full of projects. The show at the library was a success and the show at The Firefly is already set to come down this up-coming Thursday!
If you haven't had a chance to stop in yet, please do! Bring a friend, have a cup of coffee or tea, or stop in for lunch. It's an amazing cafe and I'm proud to say I've been on staff for 6 years! 114 North Main Street in Oregon, Wisconsin.
I've completed a few new commissions that I'm pretty proud of. The cats are Gregg & Duane and the bloodhound is Pita. It's been so great to be able to meet the animals. I am loving this so much. If you know someone that might like my large scale work, please share my website with them!
If you are in Madison, please stop by the wonderful shop Zip Dang, on Monroe Street. They are now selling my giclee prints! They sell a wonderfully curated selection of local art, letterpress cards, housewares, clothing, and the best clogs! (someday...)
Thanks for stopping by the site and for passing my information along to folks who might like my work.
Thursday, June 5, 2014
It's hard to believe my last post was January 31st! How is that possible?! Well, a LOT has been happening and I'm so very excited to report my little article in this month's Madison Magazine! Also, if you missed the little blog write-up, you can find that here.
The show looks great at the Alicia Ashman Library in Madison. If you haven't stopped by yet, please do so! If traveling to the West Side is a bit far for you, no worries, looks like I will be showing my work on the East Side, as well! Stay tuned for my work being displayed at The Pinney Branch later this summer. (If you are wondering who that good lookin' man is helping me hang the show....you can see his work here!)
Don't let the road construction stop you from stopping in Johnson Public House this summer! My new series of Wild Animals can be seen while you enjoy the best coffee in town. No kidding.
My plans for the show that goes up at The Firefly Coffeehouse in July are being a bit challenged by some material I need that is on backorder. The show might not be what I had planned, but there will be a show! I work as a barista at this amazing cafe, so stop in this July and say hello! The show goes up July 3.
It's been a busy Spring! My son turned 4, and per his request, I made him this painting of a Mama Fox and her kit. If you have interest in commissioning a work of art, please visit this page for details.