1/16. Pair of gloves, oil in linen panel, 5x7 in.
A late Happy New Year greeting to everyone, and a thanks to those who wished me well. We had returned from a lovely visit with family and were getting comfortable at home when my wife and daughter and finally I came down with a bad virus. They had it worse, with fevers and all - Breagha one weekend got her first ever fever, and slept (not too successfully) in bed with for us for several nights. She got better quick, but my wife and I are still fighting monster coughs. It’s really too bad when you have just a virus (i.e. a cold) because your doctor, if he/she’s responsible, won’t have anything to prescribe other than a cough suppressant that doesn’t work. A sore throat is always the most annoying thing to me, and I was real glad when mine went away. I hope everyone out there has been well, or at least suffered only a teeny cold this winter.
Over Christmas I found it hard to get motivated to paint anything, so I didn’t, and consequently I’ve felt that weird burden that comes from detachment. During the couple of weeks at home I could feel myself already getting rusty, but being sick I didn’t have the energy. The longer I went the heavier that inertia felt. It’s a funny thing that invisible force, the hurdle in the mind that grows higher with time and inactivity. What should be another step in the journey slowly becomes a "first" step, as more and more importance is attached to it. But the key is that it really is in the mind, and all of this burden is as quick to vanish as it is slow to appear. (A strange thing is, I always believed, that an extended time away from something can help, as my accumulated years away from painting had helped, in terms of developing strong likes and dislikes and subconscious feelings of what I was ultimately after, and perhaps making it easier to unlearn some things. But of course this is a theory and unprovable.)
My wife got me these real nice gloves for Christmas, which had come in handy in upstate New York but Virginia weather hasn't much called for (last week it was almost summery here). I had never painted leather so this was a new texture and more limited palette (for me). Rusty as I felt, I wasn’t sure how well it would turn out, but it was an easier subject than the pepper shaker so I wasn’t too worried, really. It was nice to paint again; when I finally took my glass palette out of my paint box and slid it onto its place on the easel it felt like a handshake with a good friend.
Old English word of the day:
glóf [glōf]: glove