Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Making and selling art

I sold a painting last week- my fourth painting to sell in the last three months. I am so happy to have sold a piece, but can't help but feel some melancholy as well. People seem to be most drawn to those paintings that are extremely personal and emotionally charged for me. Those paintings that I make with the pure intention of selling are of no interest to a prospective buyer. So why am I selling? Partly because with a new baby, I can use the money... but more so because it is time to let go of some of these pieces and the feelings attached to them. Like the piece of the little girl who lost her family in the tsunami. I painted her when I thought that I could not have any children. I was childless- and she was motherless... and the painting was the only thing I felt like I could create to fill that void. That was four years ago... and now I have two beautiful children. She was still so hard to say goodbye to- but I know she has a good home.
Pavel Filinov was this eccentric Russian artist who felt that each piece of art he created was alive and that with time, they would change and grow- just like children. That notion has always resonated with me. Maybe they don't change... but my relationship to them does change, which I guess is really what art is all about...

Wednesday, November 18, 2009


Leo came on September 26th, 2009. It was quite a difficult pregnancy- but a pretty easy birth... well as easy as birth can be:-) Perhaps because this time around I had no preconceived notions about what might take place. I simply trusted my body and my son to do what they needed to do. When the pain was too intense, I decided for the epidural and took a nap. Woke up and had a baby. Pretty cool. Letting go has never been my strong suit. I generally like to make things more difficult than they need to be... but I am learning.
Leo is now six weeks old. He is beautiful and healthy and I am feeling very blessed with this amazing gift. He sleeps a lot and I have been able to paint! Which has felt wonderful... but more about that in my next post. My daughter has had some trouble adjusting, but I trust her process and try to show her as often as I can how much I adore her.
Breastfeeding has been slightly painful, but I am enduring and working through. He is gaining weight like a champ, and I am feeling successful and happy. Being an older mom can be hard on the body, but except for an unfortunate accident with my eyelash curler that destroyed half of my eyelashes- I am doing okay. I guess it really doesn't matter since I pretty much stay in my pajamas all day.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

almost midnight...

and here I sit feeling my little one kick and tumble. His movements are so much stronger than Caya's were. I can see my stomach undulating... waves of elbows and knees.... hands reaching... a pointed little ankle jutting from below my chest. There is truth to the notion of sadness that a mother feels when she knows that soon she will have to share this little one with others. He will no longer be mine alone. I won't be the only one to tell when he is sleeping and when he is awake. The intimacy that we have shared will end- and our new relationship will begin.

Some theorist talks about how life is a series of losses... and how dealing with each impending loss is the true task of being human. The first loss is the loss of the comfort of the womb. The cutting of the cord. No matter how difficult this pregnancy has been, I will miss this time we have shared together. You are my miracle and I am already so deeply in love with you that it hurts.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Checking in..

I haven't written in a while... but that is kind of my adhd life. I start something- and then forget about it. I told a friend that I started to write a book, but got bored around page two. If I don't complete a painting in a day or so, I never will complete it. Kind of sucks. I probably could use some kind of intervention. Maybe some adderall after the baby stops breastfeeding. Jack Kerouac wrote On the Road in three weeks on a prescription for adderall. Can't be all bad.... Plus it would get rid of that extra baby weight:-) I don't drink, smoke, or do any drugs... maybe it is time to kick the sobriety habit just long enough to get some stuff done.

My sister reminded me that I have a blog today, so I thought I might as well check in. This pregnancy has not been easy. Sick, tired, swollen... and bleeding when I am not supposed to be. Tuesday I went in for fetal monitoring and had four contractions in twenty minutes. The administrator looked a bit freaked so I had to go to my ob. It's funny how you can have a stomach that sticks out like a basketball, and yet you can completely and utterly disassociate from the notion of actually giving birth. When she told me that she was concerned that I might be in the early stages of labor, I could no longer hold on to the denial that this baby will in fact have to come out at some point... and that generally means labor. I became hot, nauseated, sweaty, and felt as if I might pass out. I called my husband crying. Turned out to be a false alarm... so now I am back to the happy denial place again. What a relief!

Sunday is my daughter's third birthday party. Three weeks early- but I was a bit afraid that the impending birth of her little brother might interfere with her party plans. She is so happy about having a little brother. She is already telling me how she will comfort him... how she will protect him... how she will share with him... how they will love each other. Of course, she also tells me that I pretty much belong to her, and that the baby gets daddy. I imagine it will be a challenging experience for her. She is such a beautiful and amazing little spirit. I adore my siblings... and was so afraid that she would not have the opportunity to share her life with a sister or brother.

I guess all in all... life is good.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Caya and Lulu

This is another Acrylic painting inspired by my daughter. One night, I started telling stories to Caya about a golden monkey that she found in a magical forest. She named the monkey Lulu. I was surprised when I looked online and saw there was actually a kind of monkey called a golden monkey. Since that night, she now has a stuffed golden monkey she sleeps with -and wants new adventures constantly about herself and her golden monkey.
Caya ended up looking a lot older in this painting. I am not sure why. Maybe because sometimes she does seem a lot older to me than her two and a half years.
My biggest dilemma right now is figuring out how to purchase a new computer that doesn't need to be rebooted two or three time a day... and buying an archival printer so I can start making prints of my artwork. I keep going back and forth between the rational me that says save your money, you are about to have a baby... and the more impetuous me that says spend the money- start making prints... maybe something special will happen....

Friday, June 26, 2009

Caya and the Bunny

I am not exactly sure what this painting is about. I just like drawing rabbits- and love drawing caricatures of my daughter:-) Everything I paint tends to be a bit dark... even when I try to paint something fun for my daughter. I guess you can never really take the goth out of the girl. The painting is acrylic on canvas- 10" x 20". I generally paint in oils, but since I am pregnant I have to use a less toxic material.

all best laid plans...

Okay, So I started this blog so that I could take part in a community making Frida clothes... I got a beautiful sewing machine, started planning my design, and then... my ADHD set in, and of course I forgot about the whole project. I also forgot about this blog.
So what has happened to me in the last few months... well lots. I seemed to have gotten pregnant- I guess that is the biggest news. At 41, it seemed unlikely- but then you just never know what the universe has in store for you. Our family is expecting a little boy on September 30th- just eight days after my daughter's third birthday... and only four days before my 42nd birthday. We are all very excited- and my daughter is already loving the title of "big sister".
What this pregnancy has also done is really put into light the fact that although I am so happy with many aspects of my life- there are lots of things that could be better. One of the biggest things is that I need to make art.
Being a therapist is an amazing job- sometimes. I have worked with adults and children- men and women - and I feel like I am a changed woman for all of the amazing stories that I have been a witness to. But with cuts in programs and a more stressed out work environment - I am feeling more and more disillusioned with this work. I am sure that I will at some point regain the passion that I used to have... but for now, I need a break.
I was telling my husband last Friday how I hated the idea of going back to work on Monday... and then I had an asthma attack... and I broke my rib. I spent the night in the Emergency Room, big pregnant belly sharing the gurney with my daughter as we slept waiting for tests. I got some time off... it wasn't exactly the break I was asking for... but oh well.
This week off of work has been difficult. I am in a lot of pain and using lots of pain medicine that the doctors assured me are safe. But I have been driven to make art. I finished two paintings this week- and I am evaluating how I can make art a larger part of my life...
so... I decided that will be the new emphasis for this blog.
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