(A lil' blog on a dotty hill somewhere)

Tuesday, May 10

Creative Tuesdays: Striped Socks!

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A (clothes)line of communication was opened up between them. All it took was a fallen sock, that quick glance, and the promise of love was in the air!

You know how hard I can be on myself with my art — always wishing to have improved something here or there? Well, not this piece! Actually, lo and behold, I'm really thrilled with this one. After sketching it out then painting in the hues, my heart was alight with the story just waiting to unfold.

I don't know about you, but I find young love rather boring, even predictable for the most part, but show me a love kindled in the latter years... and I'm hooked! Perhaps, that's why two of my favourite movies of all time are 84 Charring Cross Road and how 'surprised by joy' C.S Lewis was when his and Joy Davidman's paths crossed. A meeting of the minds led to a challenge then deepening of faith, a startling discovery of true love found in full measure only to be known in the Shadowlands of life. 

So, onto your entries now. Reading your comments and finding out how many of you really liked the idea of this theme was lovely too. So, let's see who got around to actually interpreting it! :) Can't wait to discover what each of you have conjured up and written along the way. Thank you for your contributions.

P.S. Oh, yes, one more thing. Remember how I mentioned that competition Alex and I were entering? Well, guess what? While mine was not chosen, Alex's was and made it to the next round of the top 15. I'm so proud of her! :) Please wish her luck as she paints in her "missing piece" artwork and gets to have her piece critiqued live online in front of the others and the NY kidlit agent! Maybe she'll even get picked to be represented? Now, wouldn't that be exciting? Perhaps one day then I can retire, paint from home while she creates her award winning pieces? Ooh... I have NO problem with that whatsoever. :D




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24 comments

  1. Old Love is much more exciting Michael. I agree. I loved Shadowlands, and have read the love story of CS Lewis and Joy....what a story. What a life and love they shared.
    I can't believe we both did clotheslines without knowing what each other was thinking....Great minds.....HaHa

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    1. That's lovey to hear, Wanda! I read the story of Joy Davidman waaay back when in college and perusing old cobwebbed dusty books in the back of the school library where no one ever ventured. I came across this book by a local author and thought it sounded interesting with no idea at the time that her life story would end up tying in to Lewis' of all people! It was such a gripping true life story read! For well over a decade kafterwards I kept thinking that someone needs to make this into a movie and they finally did. :) What a gem.

      Thank you for your comment. I chuckled at your piece too and will leave a proper comment Tuesday when not so tired and better equipped to leave something more meaningful than I might muster presently. :) Thank you again, dear Wanda. So glad you found the time to do your lovely charming piece. More on that later, as noted...

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  2. PS. I love enlarging the picture and seeing all the details and their expressions... priceless.

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    1. hee hee I chuckled myself while drawing them. Fun!

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  3. Michael, this is such a wonderful heart warming drawing. I love the idea of finding love over a washing line high up in the sky. Do you have an empathy with the sky and clouds, as they appear quite frequently in your pieces on CT. Certainly understand why you are so pleased with this drawing, it is magical.

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    1. Linda, thank you, and that is a great question! I definitely have an affinity with clouds. So muc so that I even wrote about them in my "About me" section on my portfolio site (http://www.dottyhill.com/about/): :And, whenever needing that extra lift, one can simply look up... to those magnificent clouds forming off the Rockies, reminding me that I'm playing a tiny yet crucial part in this curious and gloriously complex designed world of dotty wonder." They really are INCREDIBLe here in Colorado as indeed are the sunsets galore. One jsut does not see such clouds like that elsewhere so I am always looking at them, their magnificence and all its glory of creation, as it were. It certainly keeps me awes struck, and humbled too really. Finally, I think too, they capture that child like wonder I love to tap into when working on my art. Thank you asking that.

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  4. This is lovely, I like the dark buildings and the hint of an older romance here. Big congrats to talented Alexandra, better luck next time Michael. Now I have to go watch those movies, neither of which
    I have seen. And I love romances.

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    1. Well, Christine, while they may be old I suppose one could say their soon budding romance is new or fledgling, if you will! Thank you for your comment. Much appreciated.
      RE: those movies. The Charring Cross Road one isn't as much a romance but it is the story of two people who love books coming to form a deep relationship, or kinship of sorts through their shared love and knowledge of literature..all in teh days before the internet. Their relationship through letters only deepends ove rthe decades. This movie was made in the late 70s I think. Very wel acted but lots of dialogue which I love but not everyone does.

      now, Shadowlands, which is also getting old, also stars Anthony Hopkins, is BEAUITFUL. I think it won an award for cinemaphotography and has about a 96% approval rating. It is not only deeply romantic but a tear jerker too as two people again from two walks for life meet as shared minds and strength of character in a rigid world of the 50's or so. I love the scenes of the Lake District you will see. Do let me know if you see it. It is even more lovely when you realise it is very close to the their real-life story and romance. :) Fascinating too.

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  5. Love it, love it! You are the best, even if Alexandra has outed you this time around in the competition, haha! Good luck A, they should definitely pick you from that top 15!!!!

    Old love becomes more like a wonderful companionship as the years go by. Oh yes, the love is still there but often shared in different ways.
    We even have fun doing the dishes together (I never use the dishwasher - just the kitchen sink), gardening of course, even shopping together and spending far too much time chatting with the cashiers who probably think we're just an older couple losing their marbles a wee bit!

    Now we're off again Michael - flying to Dublin (via Heathrow) tomorrow night - and I must say I still love him enough to hoist that backpack, pull of the waterproofs, and now go search for his paternal grandfather's roots in Co. Kerry - even though a villa in Italy would be more enjoyable for me at this point in time! The 51 years have flown by so fast, and am thankful we can still do these things together. . . . . . . . . yes, guess that's LOVE.

    Hug Alexandra today - and think of all the wonderful years ahead.
    Love, Mary

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    1. I love everything you wrote here, dear Mary! Thank you so much for jotting all this down jsut before embarking on your grand Irish adventure! Yes, true love to put on wellies and perhaps not get as much sun as one might in the Med as you note. ha. I am sure it will be lovely and how wonderful for your kids and grandkids to get to know a bit more about their own Irish roots. My kids have that too as their grandparents from their Mom's side on both branches were Irish Americans.

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  6. I don't do much thinking when I work on a piece but you seem to think a lot...it's romantic, that's what I can about this piece, & very thoughtful as well,

    have a lovely day.

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    1. WEll, Lissa, from what you wrote, you certainly had a reason for each addition to your latest piece of wonder. I loved it. And yes, I get very cerebral when working on my piece. I think of the story unfolding as I draw it from my imagination. It makes it more magical that way. :) thank you for your lovely comment! :)

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  7. This is beautiful! I agree that long term love that will stand the test of time is just as if not more beautiful than lighthearted young puppy love. This is a great children's lit illustration! And yay for Alex that is such amazing news crosses fingers that she gets the agent. Do you guys belong to SCBWI? I do and so far like it. Anyway, it's a great Organization for children's writers and illustrators and I'm sure there's a regional chapter in Colorado. I think the big home bases are in LA and New York but they have chapters all over the country and one really big Symposium in the spring in LA if you guys were ever able to come and check it out. It is quite expensive but it's a good way to meet agents and other like authors and illustrators I am hoping to save up to maybe attend at the end of July this year. Anyway that's off C.T.topic but you or Alex please email me if you want to talk SCBWI stuff further (-: Such a fun C.T. prompt this wee, to draw and wear!

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    1. This week! Curses, Phone autocorrect.

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    2. I'm always amazed at how you can write so much on your phone and even upload your art, etc! Funny you mentioned emailing as I jsut left the same sort of note on my comment to your art contribution Great minds...

      Yes, Alex is a member of SCBWI and I have as yet not joined but we would love to have Alex go to either the NY or LA conference but,yes, pricey! however, well worth it I think, plus, can you believe it but neither of us have ever been to NYC, other than airports.

      Speaking of SCBWI, one of the artist both A and I follow, Shirley Ng-Benitez, went to the NY conference last year and highly recommended it to Alexandra. She said it was what gave her her break and an agent in the end, plus, if nothing else, you can get some great art critiques that one would normally have to pay a lot (about $600 for one) for otherwise. Hey, maybe we can get to having lunch as a group sometime? Woudln't that be fun. Talk art and illustration and maybe even throw in some Koalas into the mix! Ha.

      Thank you for all the great feedback, Donna. We so appreciate you.

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  8. i really love both of these pieces! the subtle colors are perfect! and the RED can only mean love is in the air!! Oh, and you mentioned two of my favorite movies!

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    1. Wonderful! Red is passion, right? :) Thank you for the comment, alarmC! :)

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  9. The way your picture turned out is making my smile from ear to ear. Those socks are precious. This is one of those drawing that really brings out the inner child in me. I went back tonight and added the prompt to the post.I feel so much better about that.

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    1. thank you Genie...on all fronts. I love to hear when something I;ve drawn has made anyone else smile. That is the idea! :)

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  10. Oh, my goodness....I just connected the dots and figured out that you are married to Alexandra. I am in the process of taking her watercolor class and loving every minute of it. It is so special that both of you are active with blog artwork. Wishing you many, many years of happiness. genie

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    1. Haha, Alex just told me that. Too funny. Well, we all rather stay in the same circles when liking the same kinds of art, etc, I suppose. A meeting of the minds, for sure. thank you so much for your comment.

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  11. I am very much like you when it comes to my pieces - nothing ever seems to be good enough. To be fair though, until a few months ago I haven't drawn in over 20 years :) I can hardly believe it has been that long when it is so much fun. Life, I guess.
    I love the fact that you are in love with your piece and are expressing it. Too many artist (yours truly including) rather say 'oh, this is no good, I could do this etc.etc.' - blaah - it is your work and your work is ever progressing, evolving.
    At first I didn't see your story, but then I noticed the falling sock and read your text - wonderful! Now you have to continue the story.
    Oh, and I also agree with older people falling in love - this sounds cheesy, but - it is adorable and I absolutely love it.

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  12. 20 years? Wow! Well, if it wasn't for CT, it could have been that long for me in the end. This co-op forces me to do hand drawn art!

    Speaking of stories, did you notice the cat in the pic? ")

    Than you for your lovely interesting comment, Claudia!

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