Saturday, December 15, 2007

Fun Art

This is not quite a fine art piece, nor is it original.

And yet, it is somewhat special to me, and I did take part in painting it.

On Monday evening last week, we met for a little holiday party of the second art organization to which I belong. The main activity was painting holiday scenes on posters, for a convalescent hospital in town. It was combined with a potluck, and each of the participating artists brought a small gift for a resident of the hospital, to help make their holiday merrier. A nice little way to give to the community.

Most of us copied holiday cards, and since this is my very first year of doing it, I joined LimaB and we shared a poster.

I have never painted with someone else on the same sheet of paper. On a normal day, it's almost unthinkable, as art is such a personal and individual thing, with each painter having their own way of laying paint with their brush strokes. Add to that the fact that I am right-handed and LimaB is left-handed, with me sitting on her left - that was quite an interesting experience.

It was very much like painting by numbers - which was such a fun thing to do, as this whole event kinda gave us permission to do it! LimaB has prepared the drawing beforehand, and at the beginning I was very cautious, as it was her drawing (even if she copied it from the holiday card). But we soon got into the fun mode, with the guy next to us adding to the joy by mumbling sarcastic comments about our work, which was very purplish in nature (we both kinda like purple, as you can tell). He, as opposed to us, was painting a "real" painting, a Yosemite scene in watercolor, while we were thoroughly enjoying our cheery snowmen. We took extreme artistic license with the colors and re-designed their scarves and hats. We did agree on the color scheme and stopped frequently to have lengthy discussions on how to paint what, and we did a good job coordinating our very different styles and techniques. Painting like that with someone else shows you two really get along! Still, at the end of the day, I took a tooth brush loaded with white gesso, and sprayed snow all over the whole painting, to unify it and conceal the very different brush strokes. Oh, and we used acrylic, which I haven't used in at least 3 years!

It really was a great evening. Not just the activity itself, but also the complete selflessness of it: painting for the sheer purpose of making someone happy.

LimaB went to the hospital today, to deliver all the paintings and gifts.

Holiday season can sometimes intensify loneliness and being away from your loved ones, which gets worse when you are unwell. I do hope our little effort will help brighten the walls of the hospital, and the hearts of its residents.


Lora Owens said...

Thanks for your comment about my pictures. :-)

I wish I could paint like you; how nice to use your give for other people.

Merry Christmas!

Lorraine said...

Even me - who is lately the hater of all things Christmas finds the painting so uplifting to look at. particularly the slightly lopsided faces!!! It did lift my spirits on a day like today when I was feeling very down over a hurtful family exchange. Thanks so much for the Xmas cheer.... Did I say that?