This week I started playing with backgrounds, and as soon as I put down the colors I knew what type of picture I would paint over it. I could see the beautiful white and grey hair of a woman set against the background. There’s something about that kind of silver hair that really makes a statement to me. You see an older woman like that and it just gives her a strong, competent vibe.
As I was painting, I was thinking about a poem of mine called “On Trial” (from my book A New Dish and also New and Selected Poems). The poem basically talks about how differently you might feel from day to day as you make your way through the battles of life. Sometimes you’ll feel strong and youthful, other times you’ll be tired and feel every year of your age.
Specifically, the lines I’m using are: “Some days I’m an old woman, with a lifetime of memories past, and sometimes, I’m a child, with a smile that will always last.” I named one picture “Sometimes I’m an Old Woman” and the other “Sometimes I’m a Child” to match the lines of the poem.
I painted each picture with the idea that you wouldn’t really know whether the woman was young or old. The beautiful silver hair wouldn’t tell you, and her face wouldn’t either. She could be young or old depending on how you saw her.
When it came time to add the lines from the poem, though. I hesitated. I really wasn’t sure how I wanted them on there. Sometimes I write them or stamp them on, but that didn’t seem right for these pictures. So I’m not sure. For right now, I decided to do it digitally and play with it before putting the words on there permanently.