Sunday, March 1, 2020

Blast from the Past

During my junior year in high school when the Beatles and Stones were rocking the pop music world, I simultaneously held a soft spot for the three-part harmony of the Letterman as they sang sentimental tunes such as Love Is a Many-Splendored Thing.

That tune surfaced today as I reflected on the history of my recent painting below. I found myself singing the following in full voice, with the imagined swell of several violins in accompaniment: art is a many-layered thing!

Once on a High and Windy Hill
7 x 9"; acrylic, pencil, color sticks, collage, and oil pastel on a book page
abstract floral

History of a many-layered thing:



Saturday, February 29, 2020

Muse-ing in My Studio

I had fun using limited supplies to mix a crazy range of greens.

I wonder how many more I could have created.

I wonder if black acrylic paint has some blue in it.

I wonder what fortune might lie in the numbers collaged here, which I chose only for their green ink and graphic qualities. 

I wonder what someone outside myself might read in the tea leaves of my brushstrokes, scribbles, mark-making, and finger painting here.

The Air is Green and I Breathe in the Beauty of It
7 x 9"; acrylic, oil pastel, and collage on a book page


slightly earlier iteration of The Air (left), in a two-page spread
with a companion piece that later goes floral

Friday, February 28, 2020


I first thought of the two-page spread below as transition pieces, each piece with one foot planted in my time in Virginia this winter and the other foot planted in my first two weeks back at home in Massachusetts.

Then I wondered, Isn't every painting a transition piece? Isn't every brushstroke one of flux, capturing movement from one moment to the next? Doesn't every painting reflect transition, a journey?

an illusion of permanence

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Cosmic Order

Had the intention to find a way to paint today, to advance the study in green that I posted yesterday and present it for updated viewing.

However, in the cosmic order of things, a different post presented itself in response to a facet of the following milestone event: the chance this morning to get together with a long-time friend for the first time in about ten weeks to go to Starbucks "church" as we call our longstanding tradition of coffee dates during which we consider everyday experiences in a spiritual light.


Is this perfect or what??!

Monday, February 17, 2020



A room used or designed for reading, writing, or academic work.

a study, makeshift & temporary


A piece of work, especially art, done for practice or as an experiment.

a study, work in progress

Sunday, February 16, 2020

Letting Go of Same Old Same Old

Taking advantage of neuroplasticity involves change. That's what neuroplasticity is—change: the brain's ability to reorganize itself by forming new neural connections, allowing for neurons to compensate for injury and disease and to adjust their activities in response to new situations or circumstances in their environment. 

Those in the process of deliberate neural rewiring are often encouraged to alter daily routines as a way to assist the brain in changing habitual neural patterns, for example by taking a different route from usual or doing tasks with their non-dominant hand. They are also encouraged to modify their surroundings in some way, perhaps by rearranging furniture, to give an added symbolic and visual indicator of the activated process of internal change.

Speaking of change, Dave and I decided in late December to take advantage of my being away in Virginia to go ahead with existing plans to renovate my study, so not only did I arrive home Friday to discover Christmas decorations still in place but also to this:

my study, ordinarily the absolute hub of all executive systems
and the place in which I meet with tutees
my art studio, now the repository
for some of my displaced systems
art studio, different view
guest room; more displaced items
and more
and more

The day I arrived home we also discovered water puddled in the cabinet space underneath the kitchen sink, so we pulled everything out of that space and put it elsewhere, and we haven't been able to use the sink for two days.

I am rockin' change, I tell ya—no more same old same old for me.

Dave is rewiring my study; I'm rewiring my brain.

Think of the new neurons! the new synapses! the new dendrites!

Saturday, February 15, 2020

Dotty van Winkle

I write this post to you from my home in Massachusetts! 

Suddenly, Wednesday was the day: with excitement and courage, and celebrating her current very real forward movement on the Optimal Health Highway, Meg opened the door to my returning home. We let Dave know at 1000a; he was in the car by 100p, drove to PA to sleep there overnight, arrived at Meg’s at about 1100a Thursday. Hugs all around, loaded up the car, more hugs all around. We pointed ourselves north at 1130a, finished the trip Friday.

Here’s what I discovered when I walked in the door, safe and sound—albeit mighty tired—after all the hours in the car and all my weeks away:

Opportunities in every direction! So many chances to bring buoyancy, energy, presence, resilience, and strength into tasks announcing their need for my attention!