Monday, May 26, 2008

Mamma Sarah's Straw Market

As I mentioned in my May 8th blog entry, I am starting an Island Time series of paintings which will feature life on the islands I have visited in my scuba diving travels. I have already painted one I call Mamma Sarah's Straw Market and as promised, I have completed another view of the same market which is posted here and on my website under Newest Paintings.

Mamma Sarah Hutchinson is a 92 year old Bahamian woman who lives on Harbour Island, which lies about 100 miles east of Miami in the Bahamas chain. She runs a roadside straw market where she sells handmade straw hats, straw mats, straw bags, dolls and colorful fabrics. She doesn't open her stand herself much anymore because she says she has "the grouch in her foot."

Seeing the tiny colorful buildings on the less populated islands that I have visited, makes one wish, if just for a moment, that you too could live this simpler life. Picture this.....fewer cars, if any at all, no loud industry, no rushing from here to there, no palm pilots.........and the list goes on and on. Since this isn't possible for the majority of us, I hope that you can get a feeling for island life from my paintings.

Memorial weekend

While at our cabin in the northwoods of Wisconsin, I took a moment to bow my head and remembered to thank all the brave men and women who have served and are serving in our Armed Forces. They who have sacrificed their lives and they who came home safely to keep our country in the blessed freedom that we enjoy on a daily basis. Its a shame that we have only two days in the year to honor them.....Memorial Day and Veterans Day. It seems to me that we use these days as a time to celebrate the beginning and end of summer. We go boating, picnicing, camping etc, which is fine in itself, but we seem to have lost the real meaning of these two days.

I remember as being a child from a small Illinois town, always participating in the Memorial Day parade. As a Brownie and/or Girl Scout, I would march in our designated group following the American flag carried proudly by the veterans of our town. The parade would go down a spectator lined Main Street and end at the town park. As the National Anthem was played, the flag was hoisted for all to see. Heads were bowed and lips sang out the words. Then Taps was played by a lone trumpeter standing far from the crowd on the other side of the park. Men, women and children could be seen wiping their eyes. To this day, hearing Taps and the National Anthem still brings tears to my eyes.

Many male members of my family fought in various wars. I thank them, some from the grave, for the sacrifices they made for the right to be free in this great land we called America.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Island Time

I have been painting underwater fishes and critters for a few years now, thanks to the reference material I get from my Nikonos V underwater camera when I go on diving trips. I have also done a few pieces from some of the islands I have been to on these trips. I am going to now paint a series of Island Time paintings just for a little variety.

On my trip to Harbour Island back in 1998, I had done a painting called Mamma Sarah's Straw Market.

On starting this new island series, I have decided to start out with another view of the straw market, which is located at the north end of the island at the foot of Government Dock. I will post it here and on my website on completion.

I also plan on doing paintings from Fiji, Grand Cayman Island, Nassau, Saint Maarten, and Bonaire, so watch for them to be posted here on my website.