Artist Speak

Leslie Chandler

It’s that time of year again. Our calendars are filling up with invitations to festive dinner parties, Christmas socials and “We should get together!” get-togethers. Now, don’t get me wrong: I LOVE my friends. They are the seams that hold me together in the best and worst of times. But, I find that being in a room full of people is sometimes like being in a crowded rowboat in a storm and someone asks, “So, how are things?” How would I know? I am still looking for an oar!

The disconnect is that I can be standing amongst friends, happily chatting, while also multi-tasking an artistic composition in the back of my mind. “Love how the evening light is hitting the side of that wall on an angle” or “I have yet to see an identical eye colour: eyes are like snowflakes” or “That pose makes me want to sketch.” And so on. It’s a bit like having two movies playing at the same time. Life collects ideas for me. I constantly log them as “options” and store them in my mind’s attic. Clutter is ongoing.

My husband, bless his patient heart, gets this. I think I must amuse him unintentionally. Ironically, though, I think I am rubbing off on him a bit because he will make a comment in my “voice” before I get a chance to, pointing out something that I might have noticed. For instance, he was not originally a bird man, but if he glimpses a blur flying past, he’ll say something like “Look! A purple-spotted bug catcher on the wing!” Invariably, I look. I always look for the flying monkey.

So, if you happen to see me standing in a room full of lovely people, looking lost without an oar, by all means ask me how things are but don’t leave out the soft colours in the glow of the moon, the way the setting sun highlights the beautiful wrinkles in a gentle elderly smile or how to meet the soul of a friend by seeing beyond their gaze.

May you all enjoy the company of true friends, and may your Thanksgiving, Christmas and holiday seasons be soulful and merry.wink