Thursday, April 2, 2015

Portrait of the Artist as a Young Woman

Every day, when I pick Ember up from preschool, there is a pile of about 20 drawings in her cubby. I flip through the multi-colored construction paper pages and marvel over her fire-breathing dinosaurs, the decked-out princesses, and the families of penguins she has created. 

Ember has talent. She draws beautifully, filling every inch of her pages with characters and objects. If you watch her draw, you will hear her tell a story as she puts her marker to the paper. Her stories are elaborate, sometimes a little hard to follow, almost always quite emotionally charged.

It is an amazing thing to watch the artist as a young woman. To be honest, I am just a little envious of her abilities. She sits down at the kitchen table, takes a pen in her hand, and her imagination just kicks in to high gear, with visions and ideas pouring out of her fingers. It comes so easily to her.

For me, it is not as easy. I mean, I went to art school, and spent four years of my life intensely immersed in an environment that fostered my imagination. But now I am a working mommy. When I sit down at the kitchen table, I am thinking about my grocery list, and getting my kids enrolled in summer programs, and doing the laundry, and surgeries, and… the list goes on. It is so hard for my mind to put reality on pause, even for a few minutes.

But, inspired by Ember and her talents, I have ventured to take apen in hand again recently. I haven’t quite been escaping my reality, but I have been drawing my reality. And though my drawings are not quite as imaginative as Ember’s, it still feels really good to draw.

Thank you, Ember, for being so magnificent with your own imagination, and for inspiring me to give my creativity an outlet. I look forward to seeing your creativity grow and flourish, and to sharing our pens, pencils, markers and paper for many years to come.

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