Tuesday, November 24, 2009
watercolor for grandma
This painting was my first finished watercolor and at times I never thought it would end. I started a few others before this but I guess my attention span wasn't long enough to finish just one at a time.
When I began the wash on this I was in Flagstaff, Arizona at my friend Cinda's house. Her mom and aunt and been my genius teachers prior to this painting and the skills they taught me have stuck with me painting after painting. I started this wash like any other wash, lots of water, a little paint. I started out with good intentions and then got frustrated and threw it on the floor, in my mind I was done with this. Cinda walked over, picked it up and told me it was fine I just needed a break. So I took one and several long ones after that. I finished the face while in Flagstaff.
I moved back to Utah a month or two later and began working on it some more. At some point in the beginning I talked to my grandma on the phone and I told her I was painting her a picture (at the time I hated it and figured she had to love anything I did, afterall she was my grandma). In Utah I completed the hair which is when I started really liking it, but it was too late to keep it I had already promised it to my grandma. A few months after that I moved to Idaho where I had nothing but time and I completed it.
When I was back in Utah again a few months later I gave it to my parents and they took it to my grandma who was residing in Wyoming with them. My mom told me that my grandma was planning on getting a frame for it at Walmart but when she saw it she said it was the most beautiful painting she had ever seen. She took it to a frame shop and got non-reflective museum glass and a fancy frame.
My grandma hung it in the cabin where she was living. When she moved she took it with her to St. George Ut, Quartsite Az and Omaha NE. When she was about 89 she gave the painting back to me. She wanted to make sure I ended up with it. I thought she must have gotten sick of it because I didn't think she was near death and I was right. I went to her 90th birthday party and she was doing just fine. Later that year she died and the people she was living with wouldn't let the family in to get her things. Maybe she knew how things would end up and maybe she didn't but I'm glad I ended up with it.
This painting has traveled many places and I hope it travels many more with me and maybe even future generations. Thank you grandma for inspiring it.