A Painting A Day: Day 36, August 8th 2012
Red-tailed Hawks for Mom
5.5" x 5.5" watercolor on paper
The previous night I take a long walk from my apartment to the Lower East Side, the first neighborhood I lived in when I moved to New York, six years ago. As I pass my old apartment, I imagine myself six years ago: a young woman scared yet excited for the future with a full life ahead of her. I say a silent prayer for myself as if I were still up there, anticipating my first year at the New York Studio School, unaware that I will spend three years there, venture to Vermont, then Ohio and back again. I remind myself that there will be hard times ahead, harder than I can dream of, but also blissful times and opportunities beyond the scope of my imagination. I tell myself that the bumps and bruises make you who you are; they bring you back to yourself and strengthen you. The friends and relationships that you believe lost will give way to an abundance of new ones. I tell myself that I love myself very very much and there is no need to be afraid.
And then I realize that I am talking to myself now, in a nearly identical situation, six years later. But instead of school, I face a new job, an apartment in an even less explored area of New York (Brooklyn), and I have the same damn fears and anxieties. But this time I have experience and I know that these feelings, too will pass.
Late to bed, early to rise. I wake with the image of a red-tailed hawk flapping its wings: one wing is extended and the other tucked. There was another animal making the same movement that I forget upon waking. Perhaps a sea creature? A word on my mouth: Mom. This red-tailed hawk is for mom. So in the hour or two before leaving the house, I paint these images from the internet, as I don't know how to capture that dream image. Here you go, Mom. I love you and maybe this bird will help you on your own journey.
Some garden photos (for fun)