The UPS guy did his usual ring-the-bell-and-run routine as he delivered this gargantuan box. A glance at the label told me it was from my Mom. I'd forgotten she told me to expect a package on Weds.
I cut the tape and opened the box, and Wowowow.... inside I found this:
"Easter Morning" by Karen Bannister '08
A combined anniversary and birthday gift from her to me. I'd seen this painting during my October visit with her and declared it "my new favorite" of all her works. How lovely to own it now! This photo doesn't really do it justice as the plexiglass reflected back some light. The background is more a soft buttery yellow and the flowers are a bit more "punched up". It's the perfect answer to a dreary day, so soft and full of light.
You'd hardly know by looking at this gorgeous piece that Mom had never painted a watercolor until 1998. It was after my father's sudden and unexpected death, and she was feeling so lost. A friend who is a painter suggested Mom join her in a lesson, and that's all it took. She was hooked. Newly obsessed, she neglected her gardens (her past obsession), going so far as to hire a gardening service to do that for her so she'd have more time to paint.
She transformed her dining room into a studio, and bought a small drop-leaf table to pull out when she has guests in for a meal. Everyone who knows her even a little understands that she dismantles her studio set-up only for massively special occasions. She's got at least 3-4 paintings going on at a time, switching between them as she waits for layers to dry.
She's had several one-woman shows in her local area, as well as works in group shows, including the Garden State Watercolor Society. I think she's found herself at last.
Thanks, Mom. I love it.