Upstarted. Uprooted. Reborn.
watercolour on 300lb Arches cold press watercolour paper
Recently I finished this painting loosely based on a photo
I took of a female American Redstart a few years ago.
I wanted to showcase some of the interesting feather formations
without getting too caught up in details. I chose to work around the white and not use any
masking fluid. Tricky, but definitely worth the extra time in this case because it kept me thinking one step ahead with every brushstroke.
Some of you may have noticed that I've switched back to my maiden name (Obalek) for signing my paintings. This is something I've been struggling with for some time now, for several reasons.
The more obvious reason being the dissolution of my marriage last year, but the not-so-obvious reason is that our family name means a lot to me.
My grandmother, Kay Obalek, was an artist who inspired me to be creative and live my own life. I've always been a wanderer, a traveler, and fiercely independent. Grandma was known to go off on trips by herself (sometimes they were during conversation, but you get the idea). My Grandfather took me on nature walks where we could be silent together. Ahh...silence.
And most importantly, my father taught me to play guitar, see the beauty in trees, and he allowed me the solitude to develop my inner world. He remains, to this day, my biggest fan.
It only seems fitting that as I continue my journey and work on this new chapter in my life, that I embrace my heritage, including our quirky name that is always met with "say that again?" or "how do you spell that" or "o-what?"