Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Paint Us! Paint Us! - a painting by Candy Crawford Day

One of the blessings of getting involved in the art community is the opportunity to make connections with other artists. I once wrote that painting has brought an entirely new dimension to my group of friends. Such a true statement! One such friend is Candy Day. She belongs to the Plein Air Painters of the Southeast and is a fellow Georgia girl. I grew up in Georgia - mostly Rome, but also Ellijay and Griffin. As it turns out, Candy went to the same high school I attended and married the boy who lived next door to us when we lived in Rome, GA. Literally right next door! Although I knew her husband when we lived in Rome, I never knew Candy.

I met Candy for the first time when PAPSE was in Leiper's Fork back in September 2018. As we chatted at one of the PAPSE get-togethers, I found out that she now lives in Ellijay. Our family lived in Ellijay before we moved to Rome. And she is also a cousin of my brother's best friend from Ellijay. Small world.

Besides the school, town and neighbor connections, I saw immediately that Candy is a gifted artist. A few months back, she posted a photograph of a painting she was doing of three little girls at the beach. I immediately loved that painting. There's just something about their facial expressions, and the way they're standing in the painting. Candy explained the setting for the painting. She had been painting at the beach, and the girls came up to watch her and then cried, "Paint Us! Paint Us!" So Candy painted them.

"Paint Us! Paint Us!" oil on 16x20 panel
That was about six months ago. I figured someone snapped up that painting quickly. Then six or so weeks ago, I saw that Candy had posted a painting she was working on, and in the background I saw "Paint Us! Paint Us!" on the wall. I messaged her and asked if it was still available for purchase. She said it was, and we agreed on a price. Since my mother lives in north Georgia, I decided to pick it up in person so we wouldn't have to deal with shipping. So my mother, two sisters, and I made a day trip out of it. Candy recommended a good restaurant in Ellijay for us to have lunch. We drove to Ellijay (just a 90-minute drive from my mother's home in Rome), had a delightful lunch, and then drove out to Candy's house and studio. It was great to see her studio, to chat with her and her husband again, and I loved the painting even more in person.  Here is a photo of Candy and me in her studio.

I brought the painting home and it is now on the wall in my dining room. Next to it is a painting by Kathie Odom, "Homestead Remnants" and below it is a painting of mine, "He Planted Wildflowers for Me."  (I could've moved the hammer out of the photo, couldn't I? Or cropped it out of the photo!  LOL!)

Each time I pass that painting, it grabs my attention - it touches my heart. I'm a little in awe that I own it! Art is so personal and individual. Art affects us based on our unique experiences, thoughts, and ideas. We react to what moves us. Maybe it's my years of teaching elementary school age children that makes a painting of children so special to me. I also know how difficult it is to capture the essence of a person in a painting. In "Paint Us! Paint Us!" the  individual personality of each girl just oozes out of the painting. I couldn't be happier with this addition to my art collection. 

To me, a home filled with art - especially art by people I know - my own art - art that tells a story - art that moves me - is the home I want - and blessedly, the home I have.

The Dry Spells

I believe that most people who are involved in creative endeavors hit dry spells occasionally. The past couple months have been quite dry for me. Dry spells aren't necessarily bad, though. They can be a time of renewing, resting, getting centered again.

In early December, I finished up a class at On-Track Studios in Franklin taught by Karen Philpott. I really like Karen, and ended up with several paintings I like as a result of the classes I took from her.

This is my favorite. It is painted from a photograph that Karen provided us. She had a selection of photographs for us to choose from, and I chose this one because I love the contrast of the cold icy snow in the foreground to the warmth of the sky in the background. In looking at it with fresh eyes, though, I think there needs to be some of that gold color from the sky reflected on the snow. So I might go back and do that. It would unify the two parts of the painting.

This next one is also from a photo provided by Karen. I like this one, too.

This one was done in Karen's water reflections class back in late summer. I don't recall if I've written about or posted this one or not. It was painted from another of Karen's photographs.

This next one is a small painting - from my imagination. I love doing the water and the reflections of the boat and the land and the sky.
My sister, Debi, gave me a photo of a scene from their visit to Greece a couple years ago. I painted it for her. If I had it to do over again, I'd leave out that pier or whatever it is on the left. But I finished it, varnished it, framed it, and gave the painting to Debi. So it's done and gone - with the pier.

And now - this dry spell is into its third month, and I'm ready to bring on the rain of painting. In the next few months, I have quite a few painting opportunities that are exciting and that I'm anticipating with a lot of joy.

Paint Us! Paint Us! - a painting by Candy Crawford Day

One of the blessings of getting involved in the art community is the opportunity to make connections with other artists. I once wrote that p...