“Play me a Song” 10×10, oil on canvas Buy Now

Yesterday a friend made this comment about my month of painting thus far: “I love how you use birds as a safe space but then venture out into completely different vistas: the musicians, the tree, the flowers, the abstracts.”

Yes! I thought. Birds are my safe space. They are where I do most of my thinking, plotting, exploring. They are my go-to dance move until I can learn other steps.

I’ve painted several birds lately so I’ve had lots of time to think, and today I returned to my musician series. This photo was sent to me a while back (I’m still collecting them, by the way, and will be continuing the series beyond the 31 days). I promptly started then abandoned the painting. Today I completed it.

I’m typically drawn to only one figure in a painting, but the attention (and delight) with which this little boy listens to his grandfather play guitar warranted a two-figure attempt.

It got me thinking about listening in general. The kind of listening that is not formulating a response as the other speaks. The kind that delights in what the other says because she has uttered it and not because it is perfectly in tune or polished. This week I’m going to attempt to listen to others the way this little one is listening to this guitar. Want to join me?