This is the latest update, with leaves and moss; it is a work in progress from a photograph by unknown of an old Live Oak tree in New Orleans. The above name is how I will always think of it because it was mostly done while waiting for my internet provider to come and restore my internet after one of their contractors showed up unexpectedly to bury the cable line, but unhooked the cable connection instead, and left without saying a word. He left his shovel behind. At any rate, I’m working on getting the suggestion of trees and shrubs in the background as they would look on a very foggy morning. It’s harder than you would think!
the old Live Oak trees in New Orleans are simply breathtaking and magnificent. This is my initial outline of one of them.
Growing up in New Orleans, we spent many holidays, weekends and vacations at the white sand beaches of the Florida panhandle. When my beloved niece was about three or four, my sister and her then husband bought a house in Grayton Beach, which is one of the loveliest beaches in the U.S. Those days with Shawn, Andre and the kids were some of the best times in my life. I miss them, and the blue green waters of the Gulf of Mexico. This painting could be almost anywhere, but Florida will always hold a special place in my heart.
This is the final painting in the Katrina trilogy, called “Peace.” After days of furiously painting in a whirlwind of emotion, I felt at peace. I was finally able to live with the grief, the anger, the frustration and the bitter disappointment in the way our country dealt with what was, in New Orleans, a man made tragedy that could have been prevented. The piece reminds me of the healing power of water and of the ancient and majestic cypress trees that live in the water of our swamps and bayous. This is home to me, still chaotic and wild, but returned to the cool green and blue shades of clean water. Thank you for participating in my story.
UPDATE: This is now living at the U.S. Embassy in Latvia per the request of Ambassador John Carwile.
This came straight out of a deep spot in my amygdala. I just started putting colors on the canvas and it informed me of what it was. Maybe I had been obsessively watching Game of Thrones.
This is from a photograph sent to me by one of my oldest friends, a New Orleans native who spends every minute he can in the bayous, swamps, marshes and lakes, hunting and fishing. Because this pastime requires early awakening, he is able to get some of the most beautiful shots of very dramatic times of the day. Here is my version of it. It’s now living at his house. I hope his wife likes it!
My cousin, Ashton Shaw Despot, is a unique and wonderful artist who lives in New Orleans, where all of my immediate family live. Her style of painting is unlike any I have ever seen, and I love it. She projects a sense of wonder and serenity in her work that is almost childlike, in the best possible way. This painting was inspired by one of hers. It is not for sale and never will be, but hangs in my house as a tribute to the artistic genius of another woman in my family. Please check out her work at http://ashtonshawdespot.com/ She is a genuine ray of light.