Thursday, May 24, 2007

Thanks Granddad.

I wrote this several years ago. Maybe 2001?

My first portrait.  1978.

How it all started...

"Anessa, Have you ever drawn a portrait of someone?"

I looked up at my granddad from my then favorite position of laying down on my stomach and drawing , "What's a portrait?" As he started his explanation, (they were usually very long) I went back to my artwork in process, but I was still listening. " A portrait is a drawing or painting of someone in particular. One that tries to capture what special features or personality a person may have." I rose up curiously, impressions of the shag carpet deeply imbedded in my elbows. This actually sounded a little interesting. He finished his explanation....this time I was really paying attention.

Well, enough said! I decided we should try one of these "portraits" right away. He would be the model and I would be the artist. We got started on his personal portrait within 5 minutes of the introduction on the word to my vocabulary.

Granddad and I both decided it should be drawn from the side, because I thought that might be easier, and plus he couldn't watch me while I was drawing-- as that made me a little nervous. I posed him in a chair in front of the sliding glass window so I could really get a good look at him in the sunlight. Wrinkles and all. Who knows how long he sat there, but he was a good model and he sat very still for me. What a patient man.

When I finished my artwork I was pretty darn satisfied with the results. It was decided that he should keep the portrait and he would put it in his office. He had lots of my creations in his him , a gift made by the grandkids was the best present anyone could have ever given him. ( Even if it was only tuna cans with glitter and a polaroid photo on it.)

After my granddad had passed away many years later, I was tearfully sorting through some books in his library that my Grandmother was trying to give away. I instantly picked up "The Magic Power of Your MIND", a book about how you can accomplish just about anything if you put your mind to it. This was definitely his philosophy (right after learn to listen and be kind to all god's creatures) and it reminded me so strongly of him I had to open the pages. Much to my surprise, right inside the cover was my very first portrait. Kept safely for all those years.

I had always wanted to make a living being an artist and Granddad was always coming up with ideas for me to make this come true, but as I got older it seemed more and more impractical. Luckily, finding that old piece of paper was just about all it took to remind me that I can be ANYTHING I want to be as long as I put my mind to it. Well, at least it got me started. When I picked up my paint brush again it only seemed right that he was the first person I painted.

Thanks Granddad....Each portrait I complete is a gift for you.


Blogger lolliloobedoo said...

Such a sweet story. One day last winter Simon was laying on the floor much like you described...happily drawing. He looked up at me and said, "You know Mom. When I grow up I'm going to be an Artist AND an Oompa Loompa.
(I'll be happy with either. I love art and I love candy!)

Friday, 25 May, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

that is so granddad - many days I wish he was still here to teach me his lessons

Friday, 25 May, 2007  
Blogger Mags said...

How sweet....
that makes me cry (Happy Tears of course)

Thursday, 21 June, 2007  

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