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make others happy. [merely a thought monday]

pt barnum quote

wendy aka ben aka saul brought the movie so that we could watch it together.  the musical the greatest showman was completely entertaining.  there are so many quotes and moments in that movie that are worthy of repeating but the one that is on-screen at the conclusion is by far the umbrella quote.  “the noblest art is that of making others happy.” (p.t. barnum)

so often, it is the arts that people turn to for a breather, for something beautiful, for something to relieve their stress.  a person will listen to music, gaze at a painting, get lost in reading a book or watching a play, feel their breathing slow down during a ballet, sink into a poem. invaluable offerings of peace, of happiness, the arts give pause.

it is humbling when someone tells me that a piece of music has touched them, that a song has made them weep, that something i wrote made them stop a second and ponder.  it is my job as an artist to do my best to reach out with my work.  i can’t determine if it will resonate with anyone; i can only “put it out there” as they say.

it is more often lately that i bemoan the priceless value of the arts that coincides with the oft-price-less earnings of the arts. for what better work than to make others happy.  what better work than to be part of what people turn to when they need to breathe, when they need beauty, when they need to de-stress.

it is noble work.  however you achieve it.  for at the end, will we remember anything other than what made us happy and, more importantly, how we made others happy?

read DAVID’S thoughts on this MERELY A THOUGHT MONDAY

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they wait. [d.r. thursday]

WeWait Morsel

i can feel this painting.  i recognize it.  i have anxiously waited, looking out the window, babycat in lap, dogdog by my feet.  leaning forward, i have peered outside…waiting for someone to arrive, waiting for the mail, waiting for the sun to come up, waiting for my mind to rest.

we are in a time…you can feel the nerve endings jittering.  it is not a time of rest, nor is it a time of peace and unity.  we lean forward, looking out the window at moments passing, hoping to catch a glimpse of tomorrow and see a calmer day, a day where we might find a spirit of cohesion, a respite from the storm of divisiveness.

THEY WAIT…a beautifully poignant painting honoring the ever-faithful companions by our side, quietly and patiently waiting.  with no idea of why, with no questions asked, they steadfastly stay with us.

WeWait

THEY WAIT mixed media 24″x18″

click here or on painting above to view THEY WAIT

read DAVID’S thoughts on this D.R. THURSDAY

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tango with me. [d.r. thursday]

TangoMorsel copy

my front row seat on the dance floor of david’s studio affords me this unique opportunity to watch him waltz with his canvas, shift his weight from one leg to the other, lead the painting or let it lead him (much as i unintentionally do when we dance.)  the images come to life.  i can feel the pull in her neck, backward-bent in the beautiful flow of the tango, their faces raised to the sun in this morsel of TANGO WITH ME.  i can feel their hands embracing, arms outstretched, reaching for their forward steps.  the painting around them is magical and surreal, fantasy almost, just as a couple dancing is lost in the dreamy quality of their moving together.

ahhh.  it is a privileged front seat i have.  each time…watching another birth.

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TANGO WITH ME  mixed media 39″x52″

click here or on painting above to view TANGO WITH ME

read DAVID’S thoughts on this D.R. THURSDAY

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 TANGO WITH ME ©️ 2018 david robinson, kerri sherwood


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contemplation. [d.r. thursday]

morsel - color & contemplation

i visit this place everyday.  the place of contemplation.  of pondering.  of remembering.  of dreaming.  of silent conversational prayer.  this morsel of david’s painting CONTEMPLATION speaks to me and my need to sometimes go inside…to sort, to be grateful, to relinquish a hold on something negative, to wonder.

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SOFTLY SHE PRAYS

there is a similar painting, based on a similar image…called SOFTLY SHE PRAYS and i adore this for its monochromatic approach, its gentle existence.  conversely, this piece CONTEMPLATION is filled with color – the colors of life and vibrance, saturated with the palette we live in every day, the colors we don’t always notice as we walk by, missed in our efforts to move into the next moment.  ahh.  yet another reason to sit and rest and contemplate.

color & contemplation

CONTEMPLATION acrylic 48″x24″

click here or on painting above to view CONTEMPLATION

click here or on painting in this post to view SOFTLY SHE PRAYS

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read DAVID’S thoughts on this D.R. THURSDAY

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CONTEMPLATION & SOFTLY SHE PRAYS ©️ 2004 & 2018 david robinson, kerri sherwood


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the field in early october. [d.r. thursday]

Morsel

the field in early october

in the bins in the basement (and scattered in places around the house) are child-drawings and paintings, ornaments made of paper and glue and sparkly glitter, painted rocks of various sizes,  necklaces of beads and shells, framed little scraps of paper with things like “goodnight mom” written in pencil and surrounded by hearts.  The Girl and The Boy have marked time through their artwork (and also through their writings) and i cherish each saved piece.  this morsel – the field in early october – makes me think of such pieces.

in the corner of a new piece on david’s easel i found this morsel.  extracted from the painting it is so childlike in feel.  such simplicity and innocence.  it immediately brought me to open fields we have walked…where sunflowers gaze for just a bit longer and grass is still verdant and lush and there are wild red berries on the bushes along the trail.  the sun is in our eyes and everything takes on a muted hue.  i can smell the leaves burning from the farmer’s field far off to our west.

what is more heavenly than remembering an early october day from a reality-fantasy visual perspective?  what is more treasured than the artwork of a child?  what a delicious combination.  just ask picasso.

read DAVID’S thoughts on this D.R. THURSDAY

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the field in early october ©️ 2018 david robinson & kerri sherwood

 


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a painting is born. [d.r. thursday]

andthentheydancedprocess

i have a unique front row seat to paintings in process.  running downstairs to throw in another load of laundry or seek out a tool i need, i will glance at the easel in the studio to peek at what’s up next…this time, the sketch of two people dancing made me stop.  it immediately made me thinking of when we have danced in the front yard or the kitchen or out on the deck or on a mountain trail.  i got lost in the tango and wandered back upstairs, no new laundry spinning in the washer or tool in my hand.

the next time i looked at the easel i found these two people emerging and color exploding off the canvas.  i have learned, in this time of living with a brush-in-hand-artist, that this is the under-painting, a place that involves steps at which i often want to tell him to stop!wait!it’s perfect!  sometimes he does – stop.  other times he keeps going, for the vision in his mind’s eye is beyond what is on the easel and there is more to develop.

it’s a unique place in the front row.  maybe more comparable to back-stage or the green room or the recording studio before “record”…a place of preparation, a place of reflection, a place of swirling beauty, a place of possibility, a place where the-painting-someone-dreams-of-hanging-on-their-wall is being born.

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read DAVID’S thoughts this D.R. THURSDAY

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and then they danced ©️ 2018 david robinson & kerri sherwood

 


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inspiration. a gathering storm. [chicken marsala monday]

inspirationisa WITH EYES jpeg copy 2

a few years ago, after my tealight-vessel-throwing-on-the-wheel experience, i felt like i still needed to express myself in another medium (other than music).  as much as i adored the idea of throwing pots, the cost of the clay and studio time was not in direct proportion to my level of ability; it was time to put that aside till the budget was flush and i could return to the pottery studio without counting pennies.  a tealight vessel (ok, there were a couple tealight vessels if you must know) and one lonely bowl were a total joy but it was clearly going to take some good-long-time to get better on that wheel.  demi moore (in ghost) made it look easy.  it is not.

and so i went to the art supply store and bought a huge canvas.  the biggest one they had in stock.  the kind with a deep side (1.5″).  i brought it downstairs to the workroom and searched around for paint.  since i am not well-versed in this area (to say the least) i selected a can of black paint and a can of white paint.  both household paints. latex.  semi-gloss.  i searched around for one of the old brushes i had been using to paint furniture and i set up my “studio”.

day after day i would go downstairs to look at this spot in the basement.  i could feel my excitement gathering.  i had no idea what i was going to do with this canvas, but it was ready for me.  until one day, indeed, i was ready.

i stood before the canvas and began to paint.  i brushed on paint.  i threw paint.  i spattered paint.  i painted over paint.  time fell away and i kept painting.  i’d walk away and let it dry and then return (this doesn’t take very long with household latex…long enough to pour another cup of coffee or glass of wine) and i’d paint some more.  i’d stand back and i could see what it needed (at least what my eye said it needed.)

and then, i knew.  it was time to stop.  i didn’t know where it was going, but i did know when it was time to stop.

now, i can’t say if the cost of the canvas and studio time were in direct proportion to my level of ability, but i can say they were way less than what my heart felt.  these moments, gathered together, a storm of inspiration, fed me.

this painting hangs in the hall in our house. when i sent a photo of it to a friend of mine right after i was done, scordskiii wrote back to ask whose work it was.  i told him it was mine, laughing and apologizing for it.  he was appalled by my apology and made me promise not to apologize again. so now there are a few more in the living room.  arriving after these paintings all had their dedicated spots on the walls of what-is-now-our-home, david, the real painter in our house, said he loves them.  i’m always invested in real art made by real people, regardless of the genre, so i love them too.  not necessarily because of what they look like.  but because of what they made (and make) me feel.

my first painting

read DAVID’S thoughts on this CHICKEN NUGGET

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inspiration is a gathering storm ©️ 2016 david robinson & kerri sherwood