My introduction to the world of art wasn’t exactly the most auspicious.
When my sister Bertie and I had reached the age of reason (sort of), we discovered that Ma and Pop had quite an interesting collection of art books in the bookcase behind Ma’s chair…what they call “coffee table” books today, with lots of colored pictures in them.
Bertie and I loved them, especially because of the “dirty” pictures. We’d ooh and aah over Renoir’s ample nudes and stare in fascination at Modigliani’s skinny ones, looking over our shoulders every few minutes to make sure Ma hadn’t sneaked into the room and caught us.
Well, with all that probing around in those art books, even though our motives weren’t exactly pure, both Bertie and I both developed a love for drawing and painting. Nothing was more exciting that getting one of those super gigantic boxes of Crayolas with every color on earth in it. And then there were the beautiful little metal boxes of watercolors with their tiny oval trays filled with bright blues, vibrant reds, glorious yellows and shimmering greens.
Later on, when we outgrew Crayolas, we started drawing with charcoal and pastels that Pop bought us. Not soon after, we were gifted with oil painting sets, complete with palettes, brushes, and turpentine. Oh, how we loved that! My thing was mostly painting flowers, and Bertie liked to paint boats. When we couldn’t think of what to paint, we resorted to paint-by-numbers, which we were too young to know we were supposed to ridicule. To us, it was all fun, why not?
I didn’t grow up to be an artist, although I sometimes think it would be fun to buy some paints and pastels ad give it a try again. Who knows? Maybe I will…