Monday, February 19, 2007

Once upon a time...

In a galaxy far, far away I dreamt of being an artist. (Add it to the list right... astronaut, teacher, doctor... what didn't I want to be?) My uncle (my mom's youngest brother) is a fabulous artist. He paints and throws pottery. My grandfather was excellent using his hands and my dad's mom is also an artist. So it came as no surprise to anyone that I wasn't half bad at art.

My forte was drawing and I preferred using charcoal or ink. I never took any formal pottery classes, but wasn't half bad at the potter's wheel either. I have a couple wobbley pots that I threw in high school and as a freshman in college when I joined a pottery co-op. I loved photography, but found my photos to be all quite cliche'ish. Drawing really was my thing.

When AB and I were first dating I surprised him one day when I sat down and sketched him. We married a few months before our 10-year reunions, actually attended mine, and I think he was surprised when most people assumed I must be getting my Ph.D. in art and not chemistry. Honestly, they surprised me thinking that too. I guess along the way in those 10 years I forgot that was what most people remembered me for in high school. Who remembers the kids in science class? Not many people, but everyone remembers the artistic ones who doodled all over their folders and binders and drew for others, or the dancers who wow'd us on stage, or the athletes (oh wait, I don't remember any of them...).

I went to college where I started out majoring in art and biology with the intention of being a medical/scientific illustrator. I decided I wasn't a biologist, and I got tired of the serious amount of time and energy I was expected to put into my art major. After doing all my "real" classwork and labs I didn't have the time to sit and draw all day. (And if one more professor asked me to draw an egg, I thought I just might vomit. Have you ever drawn an egg? It is dang hard!) My art grades suffered. I dropped the art major after my first year in college telling myself when I was a famous scientist I could illustrate my own books, I didn't need a degree when I had talent.

Well I am a scientist now... not a famous one. And no prospects for illustrating books. Though I have had occasion to whip up drawings here and there (mostly to be turned over to crafts for them to build said object on the piece of paper). I used to keep a sketch book around, but I don't even do that anymore. So life as a scientific illustrator? Yeah isn't that why they have great digital cameras now? My need to do art in my profession has not been there.

And only rarely do I have the time and desire for art in my personal life. I have a drawing of my cat I made before she passed almost three years ago. That drawing is precious to me. I have a portfolio sitting in a closet somewhere that I move around as needed, but rarely open. It just isn't a part of my life anymore.

That is until... my son needed an elephant on his wall. Ignore the Orphan Annie eyeball... this is an in progress drawing that AB took of me painting today. The full room will be posted later - after we convince Leif to actually sleep in the room with the elephant and get his bed and dresser moved over. (The leaves on the base extend around the entire room.)

No comments: