The floppy yellow doll in the lower left corner of this painting is Beth..
my sister’s beloved childhood doll.
Many years ago,
in a moment of carelessness
Beth was lost
and my sister was filled with regret.
It broke my heart.
For over 20 years, I have relentlessly searched for Beth.
Antique stores, yard sales
and endless, insomnia-fueled internet searches.
A noble quest
to reunite my sister with her beloved doll.
Recently, my doll-hunting obsession
came up in conversation.
My sister remembered me telling her about it
10 years ago.
She was touched that after all this time
I had not given up.
I told her I would look for Beth
for the rest of my life
if that’s what it took to find her…
The next day, Beth was found.
As my husband held me in his arms..
I wept tears of joy.
My quest is over.
I am at peace.
My husband and I keep a journal next to our computer.
Whenever something makes us laugh our heads off
we write it down.
we read from it
and crack up all over again..
It is our collection of laughter.
My sister asked me to make a painting
to hang in her dollhouse.
So I did.
With squinting eyes,
I leaned in close
and poured my soul onto that tiny canvas.
Is it a waste of time to put so much of myself
into a 2″ x 2″ square?
Art is all or nothing.
My husband and I are both painters –
I am surprised it took us so long to do this..
It Begins: A Collaborative Painting from Richard and Michele Bledsoe
It’s surprising it’s taken us so long to do this.
My wife Michele Bledsoe and I are both painters, but very different kinds of painters.
We do share a studio in our home. We’ve spent countless hours together making art. We work back to back, with the stereo in the middle to play inspirational music.
She sits at her easel. I pace around in front of mine.
Michele uses tiny soft brushes. I use big house painting brushes for much of my work.
She discovers her imagery through stream of consciousness dreaming. I am replicating the vision I was assigned.
She likes to focus on one work at a time, and linger over it. I have multiple pieces going at once, at different stages of completion, and I compulsively push them towards resolution.
Michele doesn’t know what she is going…
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When I paint
I don’t make preliminary sketches
I don’t plan anything out beforehand..
I just sit at my easel
It is a spontaneous conversation..
an intimate, spiritual exchange
between myself and God.
Summer is over..
and we’re back as volunteer art teachers
for a group of inner city kids.
We spent the evening as we usually do
sitting at a table
elbow to elbow
drawing pictures together.
Can’t think of a better way to spend a Monday night..