Picking up where I left off…

Yikes, it has been a very long while since I posted…even by my lackadaisical standards! Let’s see, what’s happened since I watched dolphins playing around the boat at sunset?

The Magic Garden

Better Homes & Gardens“Better Homes & Gardens” is one of the two larger canvases (2′ x 3′) that I finished for The Magic Garden group exhibition. It started as an abstract painting, but before long I was putting in hills, houses, a #%$ rainbow, flowers, birds…ARGGH! the sort of art I admire most is the abstract expressionism of painters like Cy Twombly, or Fiona Rae, or Squeak Carnwath and Emily Ball…but it doesn’t matter how I start, with bold expressive strokes and abstract marks, in the end my inner painter takes over, much to my dismay, and Oh, hello, my inner artist is a #%&$ smurf. The only thing missing from this painting is a damn mushroom with red cap and white spots. Bane of my creative aspirations.

Pink HouseAnd here’s what eventually happened to the painting “Pink House” that I was having some trouble with, a few weeks back. I still felt unsure about the colours when I went to hang; ironically, it was among the first to get the little red dot of a sale. The lovely lady who bought it wanted to know what the ‘story’ was behind the painting, and it was only as I started talking about it that I realised that the pink, flowery land is being visited by a masculine ship from the blue sea, and the ship is flying a bee flag. So, uh, maybe the theme is “Boy meets girl”? Or “The Artist Misses Her Lover”? I made her laugh by putting on a French accent and energetically declaring “Le sujet, donc, est PUR et ´EVIDENT: c’est SEXE!”

Kris in Africa

It took Kris another 21 days to sail from Pembas, Mozambique to Richard’s Bay in South Africa. He spent a few days repairing the sailboat, and assembling his bicycle, then 12 days ago he took off for the interior: Swaziland, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Namibia, and who knows where else he will decide to visit, once he’s on the road? I don’t expect to hear from him much, as internet cafés sare few and far between in the countryside.

20131119 162559b.jpg
20131119 162559b” by ClaudireneOwn work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

He wrote from Hazyvieuw, Mpumalanga Province, two days ago. Nothing after that e-mail, he must be rolling along again. He is loving every kilometre of the trip, and tells me he “wouldn’t trade it for the world.” And I wouldn’t trade his delight in traveling for all the world, either. His joy is my joy…I am almost sorry to be joining him, for traveling alone is a richer experience than traveling with a companion. I prefer being alone in a new country, myself, even though it can be nerve-wracking at times, because it pushes me to talk to people and make friends, and I am free to go where I please, do what I  like. You pick the language up faster, too, when you aren’t constantly speaking your own language with a compatriot. The experience is more likely to change you, if you aren’t in the constant company of someone who thinks they know you, and expects you to play a certain role or exhibit habitual behaviour.

that’s about it for news, although The Magic Garden exhibition is ongoing until the 14th of September, and many of the amazing works by the 6 other artists are still available! I will be posting the works of the other members of the group in my next post/s.

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12 thoughts on “Picking up where I left off…

  1. Hi there, I really love the two paintings you have here! The colours are gorgeous! I love how there is so much going on in them. You have loads to look at and each time I look at them, I notice something new. Simply stunning!! What was your inspiration for these?

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    1. Thanks, Nicola. Uh, inspiration…well, I’m a colour junkie, so if i can start by using every tube of paint that I own, that’s good. I tried to get plants or flowers in, because the exhibition was garden themed. Also, I was inspired by the deadline. I must say that Pink House hills were inspired by Meghan Hildebrand (look her up!) and the perspectives of Better Homes (with a large bird in the foreground) was influenced by Mark Hearld.

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  2. I’ve missed your stories Nat. this is so wild to see/hear, enjoying everything – feeling like I am there myself living it all. I don’t know if traveling alone is better but definitely having a mix of companion and alone time strikes a balance (loneliness vs togetherness or even introspection vs integration). whatever the case, happy for you. loving the art and adventures – loving you exist. ❤

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  3. so glad to hear from you, I got hooked on your story and started worrying about you. Really glad to hear that he is doing well on his travels.

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