I’m just a girl with a paintbrush trying to paint the 2020 Pandemic pretty. From the time I moved back to a Nashville everything felt too fast. Too hurried. Too loud. Too noisy. Everyone in a hurry and everything was changing in the city and suddenly around me. Buildings getting taller.
Then the SHUTDOWN of the world happened.
The city downtown area once with music empty when pandemic struck - no one on the streets -life continued with less people out.
Yet construction for massive apartments continued. There once was a beautiful tree with a nest of birds behind the town home I live in. The heavy machines, yelling of construction workers, and jackhammers started to wake River and a I up daily and the noise still doesn’t stop until sundown.
A juxtaposition to the silence downtown. The silence inside my home from being quarantined. The silence all of us were hearing daily as we spent less time with friends and family more time with just our immediate households. Those of us in a household of one could hear the deafening silence from the isolation. The birds even stopped chirping and the crickets went away.
The destruction of the forest behind me felt like a birds eye view of our life and the ability for it to change suddenly and/or drastically disappear overnight.
With the pandemic came challenges we never expected. 2020 delivered a set of logistical mountains to climb for all of us artists, musicians, creators as a whole. I too faced theses hurdles also as I watched my own body face it’s own distinct limitations even when trying to complete a piece of art. As an Ovarian cancer survivor I know what it’s like to face physical hurdles but the mental one of covid may have been the hardest I’ve faced yet but I view it as a blessing in disguise.
Being isolated in a bedroom for long periods of time of this year required much patience for all of us. Yet, in a big way the silence heightened my creativity that is always begging to come out.
My own spirit - be it joy or pain ...be it emotional, physical financial spiritual ...always finds itself into my art. This mini series is no different. I wanted my art to be bold and beautiful to brighten up the world and my heart while it was hurting. I painted feverishly as if I was gonna run out of time trying to brighten every day with each stroke. The shutdown and the year found their way into the art and you can feel its sharp edges but I hope you find beauty in the bold silent scapes created in the
Space Between The Words.
This time unlike Lily Pad Land the beautiful landscapes are built out of trash in the studio, from the ground, from construction sites. The flowers are built of paper , latex medical gloves and nails, medical stickers, bracelets.
Wasn’t sure why gathering nails from my friends roof damage during one of the hurricanes made sense for the new series. But I made bouquets of floral art with the blue latex medical gloves nailed to the canvas to remind us that medical work nor life in 2020 isn’t without sacrifice.
Just like the cancelled series when used gifted given or left music cases this year I painted with what I found laying around in my surroundings. I plucked interesting pieces of junk from the broken and hollowed out ground that once held a peaceful little spot where before the place was flattened I’d sit beneath the trees with river bee and watch red birds nested . A spot I’d often sit atop a boulder and watch sunsets from. Now turned into a pile of rubble and red dirt. I painted to find the answers of 2020 underneath the color.
My once Songscapes turned to silent scapes -I was painting to quiet not music this time. I would hide for hours and not turn on a sound.
I craved the quiet while I painted to meditate.
I needed the words I didn’t have ...... the ones none of us have for any of this. Did I need words? The silence played on and I painted on.
I also knew just like in music you can color a song with more than words. The time between one sound and another - The space between . It’s my favorite part of a song. When something stops for a moment unexpectedly to let your mind rest before finishing the bridge it’s the part before the best part of the song. It’s the beautiful moments when we stop talking or stop doing that allow us to enjoy the beauty of our present moment or the space between the words.
Like a pause gives a word more inflection so does a pause in life give it more meaning.
Be it a staring at a painting, be it quietly watching a lovely sunset, love, walking silently through a garden, or witnessing something torn down that will eventually be rebuilt again knowing it will have a new and different life.
Just like this pandemic forced change that was hard I could no longer afford my studio space I had for over a year and half.
After building an unlikely friendship w my friend Lenny who is 70. I now call him Pops and we are like family because when I couldn’t afford the rent on my little non temperature controlled shed I was painting in before my friend Lenny aka pops a big teddy bear of a big heart helped me and gave his extra bedroom space to paint in.
So without him this series wouldn’t be here. Thanks POPS!
I’m forever grateful for your support.
Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to turn hardship into inspiration and to bring color and comfort to your homes during a difficult time .
To create with wreckless abandon
And this time I created
“the space between the words”
This series is straight from my heart.
It is raw and intended to ignite a fire, move an emotion to its core, then let it rest. Just like life, music, and the pandemic of
Be it a moment of silence to quiet a busy mind, a pause to inspire a story, a breath and rest to inspire a song, or calm before the storm.
Paint turned into colorful pops of imaginary abstract lands of happy colors -
for the hard or silent times.
The - space -
when there are no words left but
Between the words.
This entire series can now be found at The Clay Lady Art Gallery /scroll down past story for more Art
This way or that way ? The road we choose is not always one that came to us by way of choice first. Sometimes we are propelled in that direction by forces beyond our control such as a pandemic or life altering changes. Sometimes we are given a choice of several paths set in motion by life events beyond our control. Sometimes we find opportunities and blessing down a path we had no idea would come our way ...nor would have chosen for ourselves had circumstances been any different at all. -HC 2020
3 of The Space Between The Words . For all the silent sunsets of quarantine days. All the ones that gave us peace of mind during A difficult year.
Reminding you to pause to look forward to the bright light of the future. The palm trees gently sway in the light of the sun ...soothing your soul.
The shutdown changed life for everyone in 2020. When the street became empty as well as the grocery store shelves. This piece reminds us that change can come at any moment and to notice the little things in life more. Take time for yourself. Take it each and just be. This is an acrylic impasto floral abstract on canvas with subtle impasto work.
When the calm of the morning is quiet and the sun is peeking up over the horizon ...you can find the space between the words.
Multi media piece made with paper, nails, pain skins, paper towels and acrylic impasto
Buy a black light bulb and surprise your socially distanced friends with a double painting! There is a night time GLOW version as well or light it at night with white light and see it’s normal day colors. This piece has about 4-6 inches of depth off the canvas! Must see the night black light feature to believe!
Sometimes you just need to step away from the craziness of pandemic news and enjoy a peaceful quiet walk I’m a garden of flowers nailed to the canvas. The nails reminding us that life can sometimes be sharp around its edges but peace always trumps pain!
This painting has a more subtle but salt lamp like calming glow feature just look at with a black light.
I spent much of 2020 in hospitals -this round bouquet reminds me of the joyful rounds of caring medical personnel that welcomed my complicated case and helped me find the answers. I saw so many doctors who didn’t listen this reminds me of the ones who did and the staff that seldom get praise for caring and treating patients like they would family. The unspoken hero’s of hospital work “In the rounds” honors the loved one you know who either has to spend too much time in hospitals or those who have been the caregiver. The nurse. The doctor. The lab technician. The essential workers who provide care despite the risks.
It also reminds us of gratitude. Knowing the sun will always shine regardless of the pandemic. Even in the dark there is light. Just turn on a blacklight to see this light up! PM me for the video it’s mesmerizing....
This is the first in a new series for 2021 created in honor of my childhood friend Elizabeth Woodall Shannon’s honor. She bravely shares the loss of her little baby Andie to help other mothers heal. This series will be a series of peaceful gardens take a walk with Andie through heavenly landscapes.
"Going At It Alone" - Acrylic impasto on canvas.
Quarantine hit and this piece became one of my favorites to create. The flowers melt down the canvas as we all did Slowly finding out the news of covid 19. I found happiness in the vibrant hues of purple and loved trying out a new technique with using paper mixed into my medium.