Thursday, March 26, 2009


A woman I have not met face to face, but with whom I've maintained a relationship for quite some time now and who i am honored to call my friend as recently suffered a tremendously devastating tragedy. I can't divulge the details, mostly out of respect for her privacy but also because I find it hard to even type about it without breaking down into a puddle of tears. I've cried much for her and her family this past week. I've cried much for all the families who have suffered in a similar manner.
I don't talk much about my art. My art mostly exists in a past I would rather forget. The forgetting hasn't worked out very well. In the spring of 1979 after a year and a half of classes, I submitted an application and portfolio to the art department chairs of the liberal arts college I attended. The purpose: to declare drawing, painting, sculpture or textiles as a major area of concentration. After flip flopping between painting, drawing and sculpture, I settled on painting. My application and portfolio was deemed worthy, but for a multitude of reasons, I was unable to return to school in the fall of 1979. I haven't forgotten the worst parts of my past and though much of the art from that time was sold (before I could take pictures) or destroyed, some of the art from then lives with me today.
Though relegated to the background, a bit player in the theatre of my life since 1979, art has continued to have a voice. Beyond my healthy appreciation for the art of others, there have been a helping hand with kids' artistic projects, illustrations for a church cookbook, scant artful touches into various aspects of life and living over the years and the execution of some rough doodles for my personal enjoyment and release.
A couple of years ago I talked about getting "out" more. Part of that getting out was to re-acquaint myself with art and the art all around me. I've done some, not as much as I would have hoped, but some. I'm still, however, on the getting out bent and art is definitely a part of the journey.
I am reluctant to talk about my art. I am as reluctant to share my art. I'm not sure why. Perhaps I'm muddle-minded about what my art says to (or about) me, what it says to everybody. Perhaps it is some kind of fear.
More and more, I find that part of my process for dealing with tremendously devastating events like the one my friend just suffered, involves art. My doodles, rough as they are, provide a soft place for my tears to land, a place that could turn the ugliness of tragedy into something else a little less ugly.
Dear OTC, you are on my mind, in my heart, and the tip of my marker.


  1. Deborah, I love your art!
    This last one is wonderful.
    I'm so glad you finally shared this with us.

  2. Hey Deb - I hope your friend is OK or will be OK.

    Your art is wonderful and thank you so much for sharing it. I know how hard it is to expose that part of you sometimes.

    In my opinion the most of the best art is done from personal experiences: good or bad. I can only copy I cannot express as well as you have.

    It may be "ugly" because of the emotions that you feel, but you are expressing them and that's better than any therapy in the world. I think it's gorgeous.

    I hope you keep creating. Even if you only share it with yourself - don't ever stop.

  3. Absolutely fantastic!

  4. Wow, very expressive! I really like them. Yes, get out there, explore the art around you and the art within you. I'm sorry to hear about your friend but it's wonderful that you have more that just one way to express your sorrow for her.

    “Without art, the crudeness of reality would make the world unbearable.” ~ George Bernard Shaw

  5. Having a place to 'put' stong emotions is incredibly valuable. Keeps many of us from going quite mad!

    Heer's hoping your friend's situation and the pain associated with it are soon nothing but old memories.

  6. Thanks for sharing and I hope your friend is ok soon.


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