Seaside Village painting or snow in Denver in May? Why we paint…

Seaside Village, detail, original is acrylic on board,  30" x 30"

Seaside Village, detail, original is acrylic on board, 30″ x 30″

Color and images of warm tropical climates cheer a person up when the weather outdoors is full of snowy skies in MAY. It’s MAY in Colorado, people! May 1st is supposed to be filled with early blooming flowers and the hot air balloons that come out in Niwot overhead, carrying adventurous people celebrating graduations and birthdays. Instead, today we slogged through snowy streets with traffic jams of incredulous travelers wondering why why why… it’s MAY for cryin’ out loud.

Enough of my little diatribe, (it’s not about the actual snow, for me, but more about the traffic jams today due to weather! Sorry, I feel better now.)

It might seem a crazy reason to be a painter, but the escape factor is at least a benefit high on my list of motivations. This painting is an amalgamation of 3 places I visited: Cabo San Lucas, Mexico; Malaga, Spain; and Greece. Very brief visits they were, as a traveler on a budget. All the more reason to absorb every detail of a place when you see it!

If you love an inspiring place or scene, make a record. Here’s what I do:

Take photos and save carefully, weeding out the good ones right away. Make print copies of the special ones, so they don’t get lost in your computer somewhere when you forget where you filed them.

Make drawings in a sketchbook. This one has served me well over the  years because I never throw away a sketchbook. Ever.

Write down observations in a journal or trip log. Written ideas connect the dots over to your visual memory. I don’t know how that works, exactly, but it really does.

Keep a painting or two around, don’t sell everything. Hang up your photos and ideas that reflect the happier and warmer days that trip your imagination and remind you, this too shall pass. In Colorado, our freezing day today will probably be followed by a sunny and warm one tomorrow. In the mean time, imagination carries us through.

Thanks for putting up with my little rant. For those of you reading this in Australia, I am so jealous!

-Karen

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