Earth and Sky, Brothers under the Sun
Summer 2014 at the Art-A-Fair was a new experience for me as an artist. Every day, I worked at the show I was one happy person. I met so many people, fun people, interesting people, people who wanted to buy paintings and prints from me. I was surprised by the joy in people’s faces when they viewed my booth. When I looked at my work through others’ eyes, I started wondering who painted all these happy colorful paintings, it must be me.
There were three common things I was asked at the show, first, “Why Pink Elephants?” I have a couple of answers to that question. The short answer I admit I tell occasionally is “Why not?” The real answer is one year the county fair had a theme of “In the Pink” and I thought what animal can I paint pink? Why elephants of course. I painted the first pink elephant painting and sold it immediately. Years later I put a print of the first pink elephant painting on Facebook and when my friends saw it they wanted pink elephants too. So you see I had to paint more.
The second question I was asked is, “Are there really pink elephants?” At first, I was a little surprised by the pink question but I mostly answered by saying “Well there certainly are in my head.”
The third question and the one that made me think the most was, “Why don’t you have blue elephants?”
One of the fantastic artists I met at the Art-A-Fair, Robin Wethe Altman, told me that some of her best ideas came from listening to the art buyers. Every time I thought about painting a blue elephant something inside of my head said no. I knew enough people had asked about blue elephants that painting one was a good idea. But still, my baby elephants are pink, not blue.
If people want big blue animals why not a blue Rhino? The idea of a blue Rhinoceros made me really happy. I could see the little guy running around in my head, stomping through water, eating grass, playing warrior with his brother. I had to get the idea in my head on canvas. I hope you like it and I hope blue makes you smile as big as when you see pink. Maybe one day these two colorful guys will meet!
Recently one of the last Black Rhinos passed away at the San Diego Zoo. It is so sad there are so few creatures left that they can be counted.