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Painting for painting sake

It’s been a long time since I painted for painting sake, without gallery pressure or concern for who might be interested in the finished piece. I’m obsessed with drawing and I sometimes struggle with overworking an image and/or letting go of those initial lines. I have at times used liquid courage to get me over that hump of anxiety and self doubt. But last night it was just me connecting with myself in a way I haven’t done in a long time. The anxiety was still there, but I wanted to feel it, and move through the discomfort. Ultimately, it was a relief to stay with myself and be in my own company.

Oil on canvas painting boy looking through glass

It’s a painting of my 14 yr old kid. I remember Francis as tiny and strangely muscular, his solid little body always in motion. Always trying to climb the countertops hoping to get up to and swing from the ceiling fan. Emotionally, he and I are a lot alike, and we sometimes clash hard because of that. In this painting, I’m portraying who he was as that small vulnerable child, and also who he is becoming. The man that I can see him growing into, even though he struggles to see it himself. Like all teens he can be awkward. But he surprises me with his resiliency, humor and maturity that can often accompany intense early trauma. His bravery is huge, it always has been, and I suspect it always will be. Thus, his larger than life eye (through the magnifying glass), represents his ever present wisdom and sight. His crazy exaggerated arm feels like an anchor to the future self he is becoming

Painting in my studio
Charcoal drawing boy looking through glass

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