Thoughts on Life, Art, Photography, Technology, Teaching and Travel…..
The realization is finally hitting me that I’m leaving for Sicily, Italy this coming Tuesday morning. I’ve been working so hard trying to get ready for this trip and get all my school and administrative commitments taken care of, I haven’t had time to really think about my visit to see my daughter Andei. I’m traveling with a group of painters from Denver and plan to also participate in a few “plein air” painting workshops when I am not spending time with my lovely daughter. I also hope to photograph and write (blog) about my travels as I journey around the Island of Sicily.
I’ve been to Italy twice before, but I haven’t been to Sicily, so this is going to be a real special adventure for me. I’m going with the painter Mike Untiedt from Denver, Colorado. I met Michael when I was at the artists retreat Anam Cara in Ireland a few years back. This should be a great experience, although 10 days just isn’t enough time to do it all – paint, visit with Andei and see the historic sites of the Island.
I’ll do my best to post to the blog while I’m there. I haven’t seen Andei for almost 10 months so my primary agenda is spending quality time with her. God knows I miss her so much! Unfortunately my base camp with the other painters is in the coastal city of Cefalu, which is about 2 hours from Catania – I’ll have to take a bus or train to see my daughter, but that will just be another adventure considering I don’t speak any Italian. I only speak Irish (cheers mate) and Brooklynese (where’s the beeeyr) and something tells me that will not be very helpful. Fortunately Andei is almost fluent in Italian after being there for 10 moths and being immersed in the language and culture. She is even going to an Italian school instead of the American school at the military base. That took courage in itself to go to a school when you didn’t know the language. I’m not sure I could have done that, BUT Andei did and she is excelling in all her classes.
Just a side note…the light is incredibly beautiful on my porch this quite Sunday evening.
I finally have some down time after grading online exams the past 2 days and getting all my classes wrapped up before I take off on my sojourn. Even though things have been extremely hectic for me this past week I’ve still made a little time to paint and I am very close to finishing my backyard painting. It’s been evolving for the past 2 weeks and I am starting to feel good about where I am going with it.
The photograph and my translation in paint and personal expression
Hopefully Mike and the other artists going to Sicily will give me some new tips and insight into painting outdoors. I have such a long way to go before I get to where I want to be but with my painting but then again…artists are NEVER where they want to be. It’s all a process…a creative journey and our art just continues to evolve over the years. It is an incremental process and it shouldn’t be forced. You just have to LET GO and be willing to take risks and go where your creative vision takes you.
So I’m going to see Andei and we will see how this trip evolves…I’ll do my best to keep you all posted – I will probably lose it emotionally when I see my daughter after 10 months, but hey…I’m her Dad and I love her even though we don’t see each other very often – it hurts to the core of my being, but it is what it is.