The workshop is over and I learned more in those three days that I ever learned in my life. (about art, that is.) Three days, nonstop, from 9am to 6pm, standing, painting, and listening to lectures from one of the great portrait realists, John de la Vega. I was the least trained, to say the least, but he was gracious. He was intense and passionate..like the meistro conducting his symphony rehearsal the day before a performance. “Why did you use that color? Where do you see that? Take it off! Use more paint! Connection! Movement! Connection!” “Trying is for the feeble minded, it’s always important to do better than your best!” By two o’clock on the first day, I wondered what I had gotten myself into and wanted to run out the back door. It was an amazing three days of academia!
By third day, I got up the courage to bring in Jerry’s eyes. I figured, “what the heck”, timidly showed them to the class for his critique and explained that they would be on the cover of a book one day. He silently looked them. Studied them. Asked when I painted them. I said, “Two years ago.” He said, "I wouldn’t touch it! Leave it the way it is. If you want to do anything, paint the eyes again with the knowledge that you have now.” My widened eyes watered and I said, “I don’t think I can do that.”
At first, I couldn’t stand the thought of painting those eyes again, but, now, I think it will be good. This time they will have even more soul. It won’t be a way of being stuck, but a way of moving on. Moving on to the next stage in this journey called life.
This week was, yet, another step at standing on my own. Another milestone in discovering who I am. Me alone, yet, deeply connected. Connected, yet, separated from my soulmate. Separated, yet, eternally connected. I’m going to see Jerry tomorrow.