Hey gang. I apologize for not posting all week. Yesterday, March 8th, would have been my father’s 80th birthday had he lived. He died in 2004, at the age of 72. My Mom, my brother, and I went to visit his grave to bring him love and birthday wishes. It was a tough experience, sunny gorgeous 68 degree weather notwithstanding. Today I woke up in a really crummy mood and it’s showing no signs of improving.
I took a picture of Dad’s headstone with the flowers we placed there – yellow tulips and blue hyacinths. This afternoon I tried to sketch it, perhaps as a way of working through my lingering grief. I don’t know if artists avoid working when they’re emotionally miserable, but I know I can do better than this if I’m in a more positive state. Or maybe my somber mood is precisely the reason I felt the urge to sketch this scene in the first place?
You see, we never got to say goodbye to my father because he died suddenly, out of the blue. That reality has always tormented me. With feelings of sadness and frustration, I threw down some watercolor here, just to capture the general shapes and colors. There’s a large bush next to Dad’s grave on the right side, just so you know why there’s a mess of green wash there! In real life it creates a beautiful cool shade, but I didn’t have the presence of mind to try to represent it here.
Then I tried a charcoal and pastel drawing. This time I began with some semblance of a plan but I lost my focus, started crying, and gave up. The ground at the base of the headstone is uneven, so at least I managed that detail. The upper left should have indicated other headstones in the the distance, but I made a smudgy mess and didn’t bother to fix it.
I hope you’re all doing better than I am moodwise. I’ll be back real soon, in much cheerier spirits I promise!