The first of any month is a great time for new beginnings.
I woke up this morning with “rabbit rabbit rabbit” on my lips, and I am prepared to make October of 2014 a productive one. Not at all like October of 1997 -- That one was such a colossal waste; I hardly got anything done. To be fair to myself, though, I was only ten years old at the time, and any ten year old really ought to get away with as much laziness as possible. Unfortunately, I am no longer ten, and the laziness of my childhood must end at some point.
Those of you who follow my mother’s painting posts may be surprised to note a sudden change in writer. Perhaps I should introduce myself. It would be a great step towards a decidedly un-lazy October. My name is Caitlin, and I’m Maggie’s daughter. My mother asked me to become a regular contributor to this blog and I am excited to begin, not only because it will help my productivity, but also because I love to write.
I grew up watching my mother paint in any free moment she had. She never shirked on her duties as a mother, but simply awaited a free moment to make art. I remember coming home from school, and tossing my backpack on the dining room table next to her most recent oil painting. I grew up in awe of her art, watching her paint with careful study, and gradually, I learned to appreciate all forms of art. I consider myself lucky to have had such an inspiring teacher.
Art can be so many things, but everyone tends to favor a certain direction. One area is never better than the other. Nevertheless, people will have their preferences. Let me explain. Some may have a passion for oil painting, others for pen and ink drawings, filmography, the violin, even dancing (Nutters. Kidding!).
Although I do enjoy and appreciate many forms of art, I have always favored the art of the written word. I have an unhealthy preoccupation with poetry, plays, novels, and short stories in particular, but I’ve also been known to make and keep neurotic lists such as “Yes words” and “No words” (Some words are just GOOD and some words are just TERRIBLE, everyone knows this, but no one ever really discusses it. But I digress...).
I think we can all agree that I can blame my mother for this preoccupation. Not only did she inspire me by consistently exposing me to art through her paintings, but when I showed an interest at a young age, in both reading and writing, she never failed to encourage me. When I was a child, we had countless trips to the book store. It was always exciting to me that she nurtured my love of books. Some kids might get a real kick out of gifts of a new pair of jeans, stuffed animals, a necklace, or concert tickets, but nothing felt as special to me as our trips to the book store.
I’m afraid there is one more damning piece of evidence against her. I started writing in my first diary when I was nine years old. It is a beautiful forest green hard cover book, and in my first entry I explained that this journal had been a birthday gift from my mother. I won’t mention the other silly things I wrote about in that book, but the point is, she started it. :) Although I make jokes of pointing the blame, I am so very lucky. I realize that my love of the written word takes on an obsessive nature at times, but it is a big part of who I am today.
As I know that most of the people who follow this blog are art lovers like my mother and myself, I would like to ask, who encouraged your love of art? How did they foster this special interest? Do you sometimes wonder what type of person you would be today, if they hadn’t encouraged you? Is there a child in your life that you like to encourage to appreciate art? What are your hopes for where their appreciation of art will take them? I would love to hear some great responses! (Hopefully, you do know by now that I love a good read.. heh).
I am planning on contributing to this blog regularly, perhaps a few times a week. I have ideas kicking about my brain for posts not only on my mother’s art, which will obviously still be a focus, but other areas as well.
I will be implementing a “Modern Monday” entry, which will focus on modern artists and writers who inspire both of us. Another addition will be a “Throwback Thursday”, which will focus on an artist or writer who is no longer living but still inspires us. Lastly, I am planning on a “Sidetrack Saturday” -- and that will be the real wild card, you never know what peculiar nonsense I might write about on a Saturday. Please do continue to keep checking in weekly to get updates not only on my mother’s art, but also my entirely productive, not at all lazy October.