Hecate, watercolor and pencil

Every now and then I check the statistics on my blogs and website.  When there is a unusual increase in the hits I take the time to search for the source of the hits.  Recently, my search led me to a Power Point presentation created by Paige G. Elliott, a high school English teacher in North Carolina.  My painting, Hecate, appears beside Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa.  From the Power Point document, I couldn’t tell how my painting related to the Mona Lisa, nor how it illustrated the topic of Science Supporting the Arts.  I wrote to Paige, expressing both my pleasure and my curiosity.  She has given me permission to quote her response.

” ….. Over the years I have developed my philosophy of education.  I share that philosophy with others and incorporate it in my teaching.  In a nutshell, I want individuals to understand that you can have all of the facts, data, information, in the world  — the way an artist has pencils, brushes, and paint — and those things can be used to “create” (for teachers, lessons; for students; work; for artists; art) BUT that true and authentic pieces not only use the items, but incorporate HEART — cue YOU!

Without vision, heart, and true understanding of your materials, you cannot create masterpieces, be they lessons or artwork.  I use a wooden mannequin to illustrate the “basics” and then show various pieces of art that have gone FAR beyond the basics to that vision, heart, and understanding.  The presentation is intended to be inspirational.  I found your work just browsing and it spoke to me!  I wanted to contrast the concrete oil image of The Mona Lisa and illustrate that results will vary with each artist based on his/her experience, heart, relationships, understanding of different mediums (watercolors, acrylics, etc.).”
These words from Paige were an appreciated and needed boost at this moment in time when I have redirected my energies to a self-directed discipline of returning to the basics in order to have more tools at my disposal in the coming years.  I have spent four hours in the last two days filling one inch squares with tiny, ink, hatch marks a la John Ruskin.  My first attempts were horrible.  Last night’s squares showed improvement.