I have so many thoughts going through my head right now.  I have started so many blog posts and am putting the final touches on them.  In the meantime, I ran across an old poem I wrote.  Here it is:

painting with the soul


what does it mean to paint

with the soul?

to bring something from within

to stand on a canvas




yet solid from an inner sphere

burnt sienna hues and charcoal

black, white, amber

stirring up emotion

creating textures like thoughts

waving from the unreal

to the almost real

a virginia reel

of spirit and brush and paint

interweaving a song

what does it mean to paint

with the soul

as i paint these words

in my own colors

to dance with the colors

of your mind


like snapshots

in form and abstract

seconds of my thought

crossing boundaries

forging mountains

landing in unknown territory

to be recreated

in your image


the creation of me–

within you.




I wrote that in the late 1990s as an expression of how I think art works.  I think we see it, interpret it and make it our own.  I think I first began to think this way about art in 1973 when I took an English literature class with Gary Adelman at the University of Illinois.  He taught us how to analyze poetry.  In our class, there were many who completed an assignment of interpreting and analyzing a poem by perusing all of the critics and using their thoughts to justify their analysis. I preferred to look at the poem, see different analogies and make inferences from the words on the page.  Two different approaches, both with merit, of the same art.  He encouraged both views and for that, I have been eternally grateful.

The picture at the top of the page was taken with my camera.  It is a painting that hangs on my living room wall.  I enjoy it every morning as I sip coffee.  I bought the painting around 1986.  Barack Obama’s mother, Anne, recommended I go to see an art exhibit sponsored by Kay Ikanagraha.  I fell in love with this painting.  The artist rarely painted with the blue-green tones.  Most of his work were in pastel pinks and greens.  I have always said it represents me.  It is full of life and energy (I like to think I am, but I have days when I am not so sure anymore).  It is busy in a way I think I am.  At the same time, it is quiet and peaceful.  These are all traits I try to have.




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s