“Anger,” an etching by Dona Patrick, age 111/2.
My mom was an artist — not professionally, but she did have talent at drawing. I found the pencil drawing below among her things and I think it is of a neighbor. I know Mom drew (in chalk) a portrait of Marie, Jean’s older sister who died when she was around a year old. Her mom, June, gave it to me, along with a drawing of their house that Mom drew, at my Mom’s funeral.
This drawing was not in a frame, but matted (with black construction paper) and behind glass, in a box in the attic. I don’t know if she was going to give it to June and changed her mind or maybe this is not Jean at all.
What do you think? Is this Jean? I vaguely remember she had a haircut like that — and the dates match.
This piece has no date, but it was Lesson 21, Assignment 2. Therefore it was completed after the lighthouse if the lessons were completed in order.
The artists at the Famous Artist School sent the painting back with critiques via a piece of translucent paper over the original piece and suggestions in writing and on the drawing itself:
This piece was completed July 27, 1967. It was lesson 1B, Assignment 2. Opaque Plate – 4. She was 32 when she painted this. I was 10, soon to be 11. Kevin was 4.
While my mother was not completely personally unfamiliar with real lighthouses in 1967 — she probably saw the Two Rivers lighthouses many times on her trips there to visit family — I don’t think she’d seen one that looked like this, on rocky cliffs. The idea of this drawing/painting was likely taken from a magazine photo.
I like the serenity of this piece. The ocean (or lake) is completely calm. Not a ripple or wave in sight. The sky is either cloudless or completely overcast. It must be dusk or dawn since the lighthouse is lit and it seems like there is a hint of light on the horizon. It could be anytime in between, though, and the glow is a city on the other side of a large lake.
The small house’s door seems too big, compared to the size of the lighthouse, but maybe it was a short lighthouse on top of a large hill.
Among other things, my mother was an artist. She dabbled in lots of crafty things, but she held a certificate that she was actually an artist — or at least that she finished coursework to be an artist. She took a correspondence course from, I think, the Famous Artists School. I was young, but I remember her doing her artwork and sending it in to be graded. The books from the art school are still at the house in Elgin. Here, I think, is one of the pieces she created for the course. I think she might have hung this in the house at one time. I certainly remember it.
Storypeople is a company / studio that creates books, cards, furniture, prints etc. based on the work of Brian Andreas. I got to meet Andreas back, just after his second book, Still Mostly True, was published. He is a down-to-earth person with a lot of stories to tell. His books are made up of truisms and illustrated with whimsical and usually primitive (think 5-year olds’ drawings) artwork. Check them out — I think you’ll like them. You can download a free e-book to see what the other books are like — but honestly — I don’t like the e-book as much as I did the first three (the only ones I own). Their site is a hoot — if somewhat difficult to navigate.
I just saw that they are also offering videos — Here’s their Halloween 2008 offering. Enjoy.