All My Life’s A Circle.

Like every young person in the 70’s, it was important to have spending money. As soon as l could, l found part-time jobs. My brothers and l did odd tasks in our neighbourhood. We mowed lawns, we carried firewood, raked leaves. I used to companion seniors when they were timid or tired of being alone. Little errands that earned me my favourite 45 record or a meeting with friends at Ralph Blakeney’s store for a pocketful of penny candy.

I think l taught every kid who had a camp on Pace’s Lake how to swim, identify wild plants and how to have great potluck picnics. They would come from the nearby summer homes and bide their time with me. l was older than most of them so their “weekending” parents got them out of their own hair and placed them in mine for many summer afternoons.

On the rainy days we would draw..or rather l would. They’d challenge me to draw all kinds of things and l did my best to deliver up what they could imagine. It was a pastime that l carried with me to my first real paying job as a blue-jeaned and bespectacled “aux paire” to three young children. T wo handsome freckled boys and a very pretty, very bright girl.

Our morning was passed walking to and from the government wharf in West Petpeswick for swimming lessons. And after lunch out came the pad and pencils and we’d begin. They’d give me their ideas and l’d scribble them into being. (The full circle here is that one of the businesses who now carry my work is successfully owned and operated by that little girl’s own talented daughter. )

I have created so many pieces over these many years. Largely, they were subjects at someone else’s request. Often they were much more than l’d ever imagined! ( Just to illustrate that point, the above 17 foot long papier mache shark from 2010!! That’s my six and a half foot son at its tail.) When you paint or draw or make, you will always hear; “Do you think you could paint..this? Would you have time to draw…that?” The style changes and the materials l use. Sometimes l intend realism sometimes funky loose things too. So many little things in the homes of more folks than l can remember, or offices, or schools, or churches.

At this very moment l have a great long list of the wishes of other folks and l’m picking away…Oh well, it saves waiting for inspiration. Don’t think l will ever be “blocked”! Others do the dreaming and I bring them alive. The best of all is that every piece makes someone happy.

That seems decidedly enough for now.

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