Blue Sky, White Cloud

Hi Friends!

Looking for objects in the clouds was a fun game as a child when I traveled in the car or laid in the grass on a hot summer day, dreaming of the future. Driving across country this past summer reminded me of those sweet memories so I’m happy to announce the release of my new book, “Blue Sky, White Cloud.” It’s a 32 page book chock full of cloud photos and what might be seen in them.

The book is now available on Amazon. I hope you receive as much fun and enjoyment reading it with your kids and/or grandkids as I had creating it as an adult and remembering my childhood imagination. It also has the benefit of showing children different people’s perspectives.

To get your copy click here: https://tinyurl.com/y299r2xk

A Moment in Time

Hi friends,

I’ve been in an artist mentoring program for a year now and have gone through a few important changes. I am much more confident about who I am as a writer, poet, and painter. When I entered the program, I had no confidence in my art, even though I’ve been doing it on and off for as long as I can remember. I am happy to report that though I am still working on improving my skills, I am much more confident about sharing it in the world (and you can see some of it on social media or in my monthly newsletter).

I’m also much more confident about who I am, as a child of God, and that is where my identity lies. Because of God’s grace, I love to paint flowers and other things that pop color. Since flowers bloom for a short time, I feel like they are little blessings showered upon us to show how much God loves us. He is the maker of the rainbow and all the magnificent colors we see.

I recently learned from Betty Edwards book, “Color,” that the human eye can see so many more colors than anything our technology or materials for creating and printing can make. What a wonder – our eyes! Each time I take a moment to study a color that I might paint, I am grateful.

This puts me in the state of mind that we should all take moments to appreciate the little things. I know it sounds cliché, but clichés are clichés for a reason. There’s usually truth to them (and how many times can you use the word cliché in a sentence?).

Why do we learn to appreciate things as we get older? As my aging eyes grow worse, so I appreciate those moments that I can read without them getting blurry. As fall approaches and leaves fall from the trees, I appreciate when those same leaves were young and pliant in the spring, rather than old, brown, dried out. When the flower withers, I long for the moment it burst from its bud, fresh and vibrant. As my back aches, I long for the days of my youth, when I rolled my eyes complaints of pain, got on my bike and rode for miles.

Now I’m rambling. But I hope that you will take a moment to appreciate a color-a flower, a child’s hair or eyes, a young tree, or the stripes on that skunk you just passed on the road. These are moments. Wisps of time that won’t return. Days move on and time passes, like the leaf that buds, blooms, gathers light, and then withers and dies.

“Strawberry Family” A Speed-painting Video

Hi friends!

If you haven’t seen it yet, here is the full version of the digital speed painting video “Strawberry Family” that I created for a calendar contest. Sometimes it’s fun to watch the process. Alas, the painting was not chosen, but I feel it was a worthy effort and I love it anyway.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M-g9UcIuR1w&t=7s

 

Adventures in Painting with Dawn Paul, Experimenting with Acrylic Mediums

Here’s my latest YouTube video where I experiment with acrylic paint mediums which include:

Liquitex Slo-dri

Liquitex Glazing Medium

Golden Soft Gel Matte

Golden Regular Gel Gloss

Golden Heavy Gel Matte

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCgg7hMOA5-5A1_3G7CXRqNw

Hope this is helpful to you if you’re a painter!

 

A Squirmy Child

“No!” screamed the child. The tired mother looked near her wits end. The child squirmed in her arms and pushed at the stuffed toy.

The doctor behind them, waiting to enter the church sanctuary, cleared his throat. Neither the child or the mother noticed him. He raised an eyebrow and squinted one eye at his wife.

“I want to go home!” The child kicked out and hit the doctor’s wife’s purse. Looking at his wife, the doctor whispered, “Are you all right?” She nodded and smiled at him, patting his arm.

“It’s okay, Abbey,” the mother said soothingly, patting the child’s back. “After church we’ll get an ice cream.” The child stilled for a moment, then resumed her crying as the mother rocked her, still patting her back.

The doctor looked at the other people in line, assuming they felt the same way he did as they shuffled up the stairs. “That’s it!” he whispered loudly to his wife.

“It’s okay. She’s trying,” the wife told him, squeezing his arm gently.

An odor ripped through the foyer. The doctor quickly covered his nose and puffed out his chest. “Um, ma’am?” He tapped the frazzled mother. “Could you take your child away? She’s disrupting everyone.” He spread his hand, waving down the line.

People shuffled awkwardly and looked away from the doctor. His wife stared at a painting on the wall. The child stared at the doctor, silent, as mucus oozed from her nose into her mouth.

The doctor cleared his throat again. He glanced at the people in line and his wife. Nobody was watching the interchange any longer. Their faces were aimed in every direction away from him.

The mother’s eyes filled with tears. Almost as if the child sensed the mother’s distress, she began to scream and squirm again, until she kicked the doctor in the chest.

“Oomph,” he grunted, then snickering surrounded him.

A Misty Eve

The horse nickered.

The knight clutched the reins tighter as he waited.

She glanced down from the turret window and wondered, “will he come for me?”

Thunder clapped.

The horse jerked, fearful of the coming storm as he waited.

“Should I run to him? Shall I pack my bags and ride away with him?”

Mist rolled in.

The horse danced and nickered again as he waited.

“I had better decide what to do, before he disappears into the night.”

The horse neighed.

The sound of the horses hooves grew quieter in the mist as he waited.

She threw her belongings into a bag and ran down the steps out the front door.

Gravel crunched.

The horse calmed and sighed heavily as he waited.

“Where is he? Oh, where did he go?” She screamed at the mist, watching it clear.

Lightning flashed.

The horse vanished, though the knight held tight as he waited.

She cried out. The mist had stolen him away from her. Again.

Betrayed

*This is a poem I wrote after delivering my only child to college for the first time, making us empty-nesters.*

The sun has absconded with my heart.

I am betrayed.

Prepping the introvert for a world of adulting

created an unintentional bandit, who stole my wind.

Watching her confidently walk away, alone,

salty rain shrivels my skin as clouds move in.

We can’t leave her here, amongst the unknown—

a desert of people, with no one to watch and care.

My eyes bloat as mucus runs like a river.

“Come back!” I yell, as we drive away, stormy-eyed.

Stepping back into home after the sun has gone,

a hurricane spins in my chest at the emptiness.

Will the clouds ever brighten anew in my soul?

Shield, sow, weed, water, prune, and feed that warm child.

Prepare her for an arid cold winter at college.

She sends me texts, and then when I call, talks and smiles.

I am betrayed. 

No one told me to prep myself for the tornado of pain. 

The worst part of parenthood is letting go.

Butterfly

How did the butterfly get its name?
Did it land on a stick of butter? 
Or maybe on the butter churn?
Did the first one have wings of yellow?
Or did it slide down a window easily?
Did it flutter around with pollen on its feet?

How did the butterfly get its name?
Did it steal the milk and butter? 

Photo cc0 from Pixabay.