When life comes calling for your gift, you imagine it will be a profound moment. If you’re a visual artist something will glow like it’s on fire, screaming for you to paint/sculpt/photograph it. Dreams will come to you and haunt your sleep with images that must be shared. At least that’s what the stack of creativity books from the library said. Lightning was not striking in this house, so I carried on sleeping in, checking Facebook and watching “Ancient Aliens.”
In the end, inspiration came in the form of a guy named Don. He was hanging out in our living room waiting for dinner, and he walked up to my pastel painting of Dylan dressed in an Incredibles costume tacked on the wall over Mo the guinea pig’s cage, looked at it for a couple of minutes, and then turned to me, looked me straight in the eyes and said, “You should be doing that.” Then he walked away to grab some more nuts and a beer.
Don came over for Bananagrams and ended up changing my life. I dug out my “art studio” from bins of summer clothes, drones (long story) and the tower of mending that had refused to entice me for two years. “Ancient Aliens” episodes accumulated in the DVR while Iain happily enjoyed car show marathons. And I made a trip to the local art store to buy lots of pencils and paper in colors that I will never use but are very pretty to look at.
Twelve portraits and a year later I’m about to host my first art show. Profound messages come in unexpected packages.
Featured artwork: Incredible Christmas Morning, 2007. Pastel on wrapping paper 16×19″