Blank. perplexed. and full of invisible but infinite questions This is how the dusty canvas looked probingly, at my artist mom. It was expected since she had taken to painting after a decade long gap.
Good evening My dear fellow painters…. We all have had moments of doubt, awkwardness just like t hese. Moments, when we had to paint afresh on an old canvas of a long lost relationship or maybe work at the same job after a sabbatical. Raise your hands if you don’t agree!
My mom, Aai as l fondly call her was on a similar quest .She dint know how to restart a
conversation with her beloved friend ..her Canvas.
"Just pick up the brush and start sketching something. You will get in the flow." l would give her this expert advice every time. "It's not that easy. I cant do it exactly like l used before!! my mom would reply patiently at first. But one day it finally ended up with a heated up , Why don’t you show me how?
Hence l decided to step ahead and to give it a shot . I just squeezed random colors from the paint tubes into the pallete. Aai then offered me her paintbrush, as the logical step forward.As I went for it, my expert advice failed me, l was equally confused too. But as determined as l was to help, l found a way out. I instead grabbed the sponge, which Aai would otherwise use for cleaning the paintbrushes. I put it in the concoction of colors. I fiercely moved the paint soaked sponge all over the canvas. I was almost imagining myself as the protagonist in those textured walls ads, who boldly splash paints all over the wall and create a masterpiece .
Although , I was not very proud of what it looked like after the intense paint ball game. l
realized that ads are indeed,misleading! Disappointed l looked at Aai. However, her eyes
were wide open. Fortunately, this reaction was not because of all the paint that l had wasted,but It was out of the sheer joy of having found a new, unaccustomed language to converse with an friend. She rose saying “All this while l held myself back trying to imitate my old painting style. Let me try this new,unusual style ”.
She grabbed the canvas and smiled at it. l was elated too, thinking l had apparently created a masterpiece. Just then she rushed to the wash basin and washed off the entire canvas along with my ecstasy. But most importantly she washed off the past baggage and made a fresh start . She immediately grabbed the same sponge, added a few more paints and gracefully moved it on the now friendly canvas. She was now emersed in a deep painting dialogue. What emerged this time was definitely a masterpiece. Aai had now developed her very own art style, paint-wash- smudge repeat.After a few months she proudly presented her works at an exhibit. The chief guest at the occasion, a renowned artist commended her for this very unique style itself. Thankfully he didn’t know the amount of water which was wasted in the process.
Dear painters life will almost always throw old canvases at you. But don’t let the
awkwardness or security of sticking to the same old rules or even self doubt of hold you
back. Grab loads of paints, a brush or maybe a sponge and go all out painting the unaccustomed way. Wash it of, strictly f if you have to! But keep looking for an
unaccustomed brand new way to paint your old and not so old canvases.