Friday, August 17, 2018

"Summertime" (oil on stretched canvas; 20" x 16") nfs


This is my daughter when she was a kindergartner. I decided to paint the image in the style of Alice Neel (1900-84), the famous American portrait painter. The blue outlines and simple shapes seem to accentuate the happy feeling, which I needed desperately.

There has been a death in the family. My husband's first nephew, Erik Stenberg, died suddenly last week. He was only 38 years old, leaving behind his beautiful wife and three unbelievably blond children (aged 9, 6, and 1). No illness, no accident, just the fluke toxic shock syndrome. He was healthy and happy one day; the next day, he was gone. How do you deal with that kind of tragedy? We are all in disbelief, grief, rage, and regrets.

I forced myself to finish "Summertime", which I had started in a jubilant mood the day before the sad news. In work I sought solace, which didn't come easily. But a couple of pressing commissions are upon me and seem to help.

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