I was single, twenty-four, a university student, when I painted her. A chubby baby in a diaper dancing into the water. Arms high with glee. Above, dark clouds parting for her feet.
Eleven years later, my baby, my Leah. Two hours her body was in the river. On the way to the hospital I said to my husband, But look at the sky. As the full moon stared back at me.
The past and the future, they find ways into my paintings.
Formations of clouds, and of light. What is above us? What is the sky trying to say?
After she drowned, I vowed I would paint. The land and its story. What it means to me.
I’m an oil painter, primarily of landscapes, of weather. Gap winds, grids and glory: rings of reds and violets that surround the observer’s head when a shadow is cast on a cloud deck below her. Yes, they’re representative, but there’s always something more.
I use the outside, I suppose, to access what is inside.
The last strokes of Flight Path had just been struck, and I’d been thinking about him all morning, all morning, when I heard the news about my friend, my dear, dear friend, who had to go. He was the bird. So high and so free. At last.
What do we miss when we don’t look up?