photos above: left (my parents), right (Amy Frances Photo).
Part 1: Why I paint + a tiny biography + the time I colored the walls pink
A question that comes up a lot when I meet new people or talk to other creative is “When did you start painting?”. I can honestly answer, never. I never “started” painting. It wasn’t a decision that I made one day to become artistic or creative, just like I can imagine that people who are really good at dancing (not me) or math (also not me) never consciously made a decision to start. It was always just there.
I have mentioned in previous blog posts that my husband affectionately refers to me as “the exchange student”. Meaning, that while most 80s/90s kids have memories of movies like “The Goonies” and “Babysitters Club”, I have vivid memories of Crayola’s new color collection release dates (anyone remember when Robins egg blue launched? I do!) and worrying about it my built in crayon box sharpener was clogged again. My family would watch “The Cosby Show” and I would color and sing to myself. My brother and his friends would play pirate games and I would draw our treasure maps in crazy detail. I would read (for fun) the atlas because I loved the shapes of maps and the colors blue and green. Then I would draw real countries and fake countries and weird symbols and stuff that I dreamed up and hang them on my closet door.
10 other weird things I used to do as a kid:
- I used to collect rocks and color them cool colors and then place them around my house and garden.
- I made maps of my neighborhood like everyday for a while. It was intense.
- I obsessively cut out pieces of paper from the Washington post, magazines, and other books when my parents weren’t looking.
- I wore a lot of tie-dye from the year 1986-1996.
- I enjoyed sitting on our deck and “painting it” with a bucket of water on a hot sunny day.
- I loved the smell of a fresh pack of construction paper.
- I ate some of the pasta from the summer camp class on making necklaces because it just seemed like such a cool idea.
- I would draw little pictures on the walls with pencils and then act like I had no idea how they got there. Cave paintings, maybe? Magic? I had no idea.
- I loved ironing leaves between wax paper and probably ruined the iron doing it approximately 8 times.
- I organized by Crayola box by ombre effect and got really annoyed at friends or my brother if they weren’t placed back into their designated spot.
Now, a little story…
My uniform socks were red one year and I was so excited about the bright new color that I celebrated by laying in my bed with my crayons and notebook and put my feet on the wall. Well, much to my amazement the dye from the socks was actually like a faint pink marker when rubbed on my bedroom wall vigorously. So, I lay there and listened to my record player and rubbed the wall dreamily turning it from bright white to “catholic-school-knee-sock” pink. It was amazing. My parent’s disagreed.
So, in answer to your question, I never started loving color, shape, making art, doodling, making a mess, or, yes, painting. It was always there, just wishing and hoping to become a real-life job someday.
In summary, thank you for supporting Art by Megan. It’s my little dream come true.
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