Wednesday, February 9, 2011

"Snowdrops" oil painting SOLD at Maple & Main Gallery's Opening! or How Can I Bear To Sell My Paintings?

You may remember me writing a while back about my oil painting on linen entitled "Snowdrops."   Well, a new friend attended last Friday's opening at Maple & Main Gallery of Fine Art and made a joy-filled decision.  She will be adding it to her art collection.  My painting reminded her of the snowdrops which bloom in her own garden.  This is the photo she sent me of hers.  It turns out that we both LOVE these tiny blossoms because they are such faithful little harbingers of spring. 

(And apparently rodents do not enjoy feasting on these tiny bulbs the way they do tulips and other tasty garden treats.)

"Snowdrops" by Joan Cole, 6" x 8" oil on linen

As you can see, the snowdrops in my painting don't have their "wings" spread because they were so cold.  The area where they live in my yard is tucked under a grove of mountain laurel bushes (Kalmia latifolia) and white pine at the base of a granite ledge.  (That is a lone laurel leaf in the painting.)  It's a pretty chilly exposure.  Yet, despite the lack of full sun, still they bloom.  Indomitable!
As an artist, it means so much to me to watch a person's face light up when she sees one of my paintings.  It is such validation of my artistic ability and all the years that I have spent painting.  When that person chooses to buy a piece of my art--out of all the many other incredibly beautiful paintings in the Gallery's present show--I am invariably humbled by the experience. 

The sale of a painting is a reminder to me that the beauty I saw in that insignificant cluster of flowers is an inspiration to another as well.  Something that touched my heart and made me want to paint it has also touched her heart.  I could call it "spirit" or "beauty" or perhaps "joy." 

Whatever you name it,
that quality,
that essence,
is passed from the earth where it lives,
through my hands working with paint on canvas,
to a collector's heart,
and from there to a wall in her home. 

I know that "spirit" will come to life every time someone is inspired by looking at the painting.  After all, that is the meaning of "inspiration":  a breathing in.

The money an artist makes from each sale is a necessity for the continuance of her work.  However, the passing on of joy is my greatest reward.  Really!

Many people have asked me if it bothers me to sell my work, to have to give it up.  This is the long answer to that question.  Usually, I give them the shortened version:  "No!"

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