Tag Archives: pencil

A Show of Hands: Treat

Treat time in our house is a canine celebration.  It doesn’t matter where my dogs are, the slightest tap of the treat jar will send them running with tails and tongues wagging.  Come to think of it, that’s probably the same way I look each night when I head to the fridge to unwrap a decadent piece of 86% dark chocolate.  Everyone deserves a little treat now and then.

“Treat”–Graphite and Watercolor

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A Show of Hands: Dexterity

As a child, I was fascinated by my hands’ dexterity.  I am ‘double-jointed’ and can bend my hands and fingers into all sorts of strange, unnatural positions.   I wish I could boast about how this ’talent’ has benefited me, but other than being the undefeated “Thumb War” champion in my family, it hasn’t. It only serves as an oddity and an off-putting party trick.  Still, I treasure my flexible little hands and thank them for seeing me through countless yoga poses, hours of drawing and painting, and a lifetime of ability.

“Dexterity”–Graphite

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A Show of Hands: Pray

People pray in many different ways for many different reasons.  Prayer can be a time to connect, to reflect, or to meditate.   It can be done out loud, with others, or in complete silence. It has the ability to create a sense of calm, hope, or reassurance. Regardless of how people pray, I think most would agree on one thing– prayer is powerful.

“Pray”–Graphite

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Old Dogs and New Tricks

 Before I started volunteering at the Spring Hills assisted living facility, I had taught students as young as three, and as old as 23, but I’d never instructed seniors.  I was a little nervous, but I hoped the passion I felt for art would be contagious.  Most of my students on that first day hadn’t drawn anything since elementary school.  They seemed nervous, too.  I heard them chatting to each other as I was setting up. “I can’t draw.”  “I don’t have any talent.”  “This is going to be awful.”  You can’t create in an environment of negativity.  Those seniors, much like my younger students, needed encouragement and a feeling of safety in order to move forward.  We began with a few warm-up exercises.  I watched awkward attempts at putting pencil to paper, but after a few minutes and a little motivation, something magical happened.  Creativity began to flow, and when it did, my budding artists began to loosen up and have fun.  They were letting go, making art, and learning.  Then I realized that I was learning, too—learning that I could adapt my teaching style to a new demographic.  I guess you really can teach an old dog new tricks.

“Sit”–Watercolor Pencil

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Live Long and Prosper

Tomorrow, my internal odometer will turn over to ‘50’.   The last decade was a blur.  I believe most of it was filled with school, raising a teenager, chauffeuring, doctors appointments, vet appointments, working out, domestic chores, and searching for purpose.  I experienced great joy in my 40s, too:  travel, painting, long bike rides with my husband, watching my daughter perform in recitals and cross the stage at awards ceremonies, snuggling with snoring dogs, laughing until it hurt, and spending quality time with family and friends.  If I am blessed with another decade of life and health, I vow to slow down, to breathe more deeply, to live every day in a way that is memorable.  After all, what good is ‘live long’ without the ‘prosper’ part?

“Live Long and Prosper”–Graphite

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