Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Muriel and Mother, 1926
10 x 8 inches, oil on archival panel

Emma S.
7 x 5 inches, oil on archival panel
Not for sale

We have a box of old (back to tintypes) black and white photos my grandfather gave us many years ago. They are of our family and friends of the family. Most have names, though I can't always place the person. Some have dates. Others have no information whatsoever. Some of these folks I remember from my childhood and as a young adult. Many I have never met. I painted a few of these years ago and have been wanting to start a series of paintings with them. Emma S. is apparently a very distant cousin, and I know that Muriel was a friend of my grandparents. 

I painted Emma S. first, but wondered why in the world would I paint a sepia painting of a sepia photograph. I know it was the family connection and the fact that she looks like certain members of our current family. Artistically, though, I was not at all satisfied. After a few more trials and failures, I painted Muriel and Mother. I have to give quite a bit of credit to the photographer - the stark background, the sun and back lighting, the women's stance and dress all tell me a story about their lives. Do you see a story? I expect to do more of these in the future. 

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