Day 28. To the Right, To the Right.


“Sheltered at the Heart of Me” 18×24, oil on canvas, $350.00 [creativ_button url=”″ icon=”” label=”Buy Now” colour=”red” colour_custom=”” size=”medium” edge=”straight” target=”_self”]

Everything you paint in a diagonal to the right. At this point, I’m not even ashamed of my really bad Beyonce reference. But I am noticing that there’s this little theme emerging in my recent abstracts where the energy of the painting starts in the bottom left (usually with red) and travels upward, to the right, and then almost disintegrates. It’s not exactly intentional, but I am conscious of trying to break up my usually strict horizon lines.

I’m frustrated in my painting. I can’t exactly pinpoint why. Maybe it’s because they are all starting to look the same. Or I start with the poem, but then completely forget about it less than halfway through the painting. Or maybe I’m just ready for my thirty days to end so I can take a step back, look at what I’ve done, and see what needs revising. Maybe all of that. Maybe none of it.

I’ve said it before, but painting is like parenting– immeasurably fulfilling and indescribably hard. Even though it ended in frustration, this painting started with a poem that reminded me of the fulfilling part of parenting. I hope it communicates some of that joy and less of the frustration.


To a Child



The leaves talked in the twilight, dear;   

  Hearken the tale they told:   

How in some far-off place and year,   

  Before the world grew old,


I was a dreaming forest tree,

  You were a wild, sweet bird

Who sheltered at the heart of me

  Because the north wind stirred;


How, when the chiding gale was still,   

  When peace fell soft on fear,

You stayed one golden hour to fill

  My dream with singing, dear.


To-night the self-same songs are sung   

  The first green forest heard;

My heart and the gray world grow young—

  To shelter you, my bird.


Picture of Denise Hopkins

Denise Hopkins

January 28, 2016

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