If you're on the Paint Uncorked blog right now, thanks and hi, this is Elizabeth here! I'm the owner of Paint Uncorked. I'll be honest, I'm not the most blogg-o-rific type. In fact, I typically avoid writing. It's a habit that's been hard for me to form once I realized my mom was reading my middle school diaries. Painting, on the other hand, is a total habit. I live in my paint. (Ask my husband, he does too, but not by choice.) So why start a blog if you hate writing.......great question.
The Why | an attempt to answer
An exercise in forming good habits, I suppose? This is going to be a way of holding myself accountable to consistent writing and painting, and in turn sharing that work created. Actually, I had a private painting student (you know who you are) convince me to begin blogging. I'll be kicking off a 7 week Eastern European and Mediterranean art trip with my husband in exactly a week, and I had mentioned to my student that I'd be making this vagabonding vacation as art-centric as possible. I was hoping to make a digital documentation of the watercolor diary I'll be keeping throughout our travels and my student convinced me to share it with "the world." So blog I will. If you read on, cool and thanks!
But there's also a more recent reason. Today is my 30th birthday and yesterday night my grandfather passed away right before my eyes. My family was there to see him off, so I'm glad I could be there. This man was truly the greatest person you've never met. He was a teacher, a bright happiness, full of jokes, a champion...and he charmed the world. Pop gave me 30 amazing years, and he was the sole reason for why I finally caved in to being an artist in the first place. Yep. I fought tooth and nail, but he eventually convinced me that art is not a profession, it is a gift. A gift, he'd say, that was given and therefore one that must not be squandered. Whether it becomes a profession is my own choice, but I should never neglect the gift alone. So here I am today...
Pop was an adventurous man, especially early in his life that I only hear about through unwritten stories. I suppose our grandparents are so far apart in age from us, it's easy to be completely enraptured by this "other lifetime" that our parents didn't even know. After serving in the Navy in WWII, he trekked to Canton Island to be a teacher in a one room school house. How gutsy... I probably couldn't bring myself to leave my family and friends for a teeny island in the South Pacific. The flight alone would terrify me. But he did it and held had that gutsy passion all his life. However, I suppose life tends to get in the way and travel took second...third...last place seat, and I know how much he regretted not seeing more of the world.
I leave for a 7 week trek to not only get some vacation time squeezed in, but to do something I know Pop would have wanted me to do. Last night as he was passing, I was resolved to not go on the excursion. When I got home at 1am, I hit the computer to get flight cancellation details. I've thought this trip must seem so selfish to other people--to leave for nearly 2 months for a really long play date. How irresponsible, right? Yet I can hear what he'd say to me if he knew that's what I thinking. "Now listen, Queenie. (His nickname for me.) If you don't go now, you will lose the opportunity to embrace that world far outside your door. Don't be afraid."
Pop, this art trek is really for you now. I'll be painting scenes each day with you in mind. Some will be good....some artwork will be plain awful, but I know that's what you'd want me to do.
The Where | another great question we're still attempting to answer
I don't like long blog posts, so I'll be quick here. We really only have one plan so far, which is a flight in and a flight out of Budapest. I suppose I'll cover locations in another post sometime. We're really set to just "wing it" for the time we're there. Poor travel plans? Perhaps. Or just a really great unknown adventure.
Cheers to you and to my Pop. May we meet again on Canton Island someday.