Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Inner Light

I love expressions such as an embarrassment of riches or a parliament of owls. In writing a note to a friend the other day, I found myself inventing an idiom of my own: a confusion of grief.

The word confusion comes from the Latin meaning mingle together. Never thought of it that way before. That's what grief feels like right now, a mingling together of all manner of things.

Curiosity, for example. So much curiosity. So many questions.

What do I know of a 21-year-old girl who gave birth to her first child on her husband's birthday in 1950?

Next to nothing, except that I am that first child.

The story I'm telling myself is this. That 21-year-old entered motherhood filled with inner light. She had a few ideas ahead of time about being a mom but mostly she learned as she went along.

That's how I approach my studio today. I fill a sheet of canvas paper with light, approach with a few ideas, and see what I discover.

Hi, Muth.

9x12", mixed media on canvas paper


  1. Good thing there was inner light, because my tears blocked the outer light. Love the bright colors on this gray day, love your musings, love the title you gave it. 😊

  2. Glad this painting touched you. It was fun to paint. The bright colors were my nod to the (assumed) joy of all those baby girls, and the more-than-five circles were my nod to the (assumed) chaos of what must have seemed like way more than the sum of the parts more than once along the way!

  3. I am loving your new work Dotty. It is filled with emotion.

    1. Hey, Ann, thanks for your feedback. As you know, my current work is a different kettle of fish from my early painting. It is indeed filled with emotion! Such a new medium in my life; I am exploring and experimenting like crazy.

  4. This painting is your best to date Dotty...(in my opinion). I can feel the artist in there. xxx

  5. Anne, thank you so much for your valued opinion! As you know, I've long admired your painting—both the painting (noun) that I see on canvas and the painting (verb) that takes place. You stand in front of me every day making palpable the inner place from which you paint; I aspire to find my inner place. Can you articulate/pinpoint for me (here or in an email) what it is that is shining out of this painting? Thank you!

  6. Hi Dotty, I really really love the energy and warmth and bubbliness (this is not a real word I guess?) that speaks out of it!

  7. Simone, thank you for your feedback about the energy and warmth and bubbliness (yes, a real word!) all making themselves known in this painting. A gift to me to get this feedback.