Friday, May 27, 2011

A Time to Remember

I grew up in the West. I spent some time in the Northwest, the Southwest, and a major part of my life in the Midwest. I’ve always loved reading about these areas and enjoy historical novels about the “Wild West.” Is it any wonder that voices from my past and from those beloved areas call out to me? That may be why my featured painting “Sand Crane Dreams” was in my blood and finally found expression.

"Sand Crane Dreams"

It seems fitting on Memorial Day weekend to remember my past and the family and people I’ve loved.

On his birthday one year, I gave my dad a journal; a bound book with blank pages. I told him if he’d write in the book, I would type up the pages and make a book for his posterity. Several years later, he presented me with the book. I realized the fallacy in giving him a bound book. Holding it open, struggling to transcribe his scrawled handwriting and type at the same time was a challenge. On my lunch breaks at work, I might add. It took me three years to complete the journal.

My first simple portrait was done of him, and I used it as an illustration. My 12 year old son drew his grandpa fishing, and this became part of the book. It was a labor of love. Although there were some typographical errors by the time it went to print, the relatives were pleased and my dad was honored. I copied old photographs into the book and pages of his handwritten script, all the more precious when Parkinson’s disease made it impossible for him to write.

In one of my next blogs, I’ll honor my father, one of the greatest fishermen around, with a piece I wrote about where I grew up and his influence on my life. Take the time this Memorial Day to honor those you love.