Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Joe and Mickie

It always seems to me that coming into the New Year somehow brings along a few tattered bits of things I should've finished with in the Old Year.   Sometimes it's something I wish I'd said to someone.  For example, I wish maybe I'd broken my mother's ten year silence between us before she died last July.   Or maybe it's something I could've forgiven myself for, or someone else for.   Sometimes a tattered little bit of unfinished business can haunt me through decades of New Years.  One in particular I've managed to ignore for 35 years.

 I was digging through a box of old photographs a couple days ago, and found a small, faded picture of my father at 53, holding my baby daughter on his tummy.   It was the only time he had with her, ever, and the look of bliss on his face at the time the shot was taken was totally missed by me until I found that photo again this week.   He died three years later of a brain tumor.  

I took out my Inktense pencils and sketched that moment in time before the photo degrades any further.   That tattered bit of thing that I didn't know I was dragging with me through those decades was to acknowledge and honor the loving imprint that dear man had left on the lives of my family.... even those who can't remember him.  The sketch was that acknowledgement for me.      


  1. I too know the tug of wishes, that can not be returned to. What a very sweet picture of your father and your daughter. I am glad you found the photo and translated it into healing art.

  2. Elsbeth, you have a great illustrative style! It tells the story almost completely by itself.

  3. Thank you, Joyce. Isn't all art a healing thing, ultimately? I can see from your blog that you are a master at that.

  4. Thanks, Marian. I was really fortunate to find such a great subject matter to work with. It's hard for me to get away from the illustration style I was used to doing as an illustrator back when I was in the publishing industry, I'd rather loosen up and just sketch, with colors themselves being a defining tool. Taking on a life of their own! You are so free and expressive with your colors and subjects, the emotion of them is contagious!