My Aunt TJ is incredible. Ever since I can remember she has been drawing and painting. In fact, there is a popular Annapolis landscape that she drew when I was little. The drawing includes my sister, my grandmother, and I standing together next to the city dock. What’s weird is I still haven’t seen a dime in royalties for the use of my likeness. I’m still waiting for my check.
But I’ve always been impressed with her work. When I was young, it was her paintings that would inspire me to buy paints and a canvas and draw terrible art until I realized how hard it was and I quit. I think there is still a canvas floating around my mom’s house where I painted a bear eating a fish on one side, and a palm tree on the other…because those go together.
Everything that she has done in the past is beautiful, but what she is doing now is spectacular.
Using a Pollack-esque technique, TJ is painting Annapolis scenics by substituting the usual paint brush strokes for dribbles of latex house paint. The results are stunning. TJ gave Jillian and I a triptych of a sunset in this style as a wedding present, and it became the centerpiece of our living room.
These paintings become conversation pieces because they draw you in for a closer look. And unlike a Monet, the closer you get the more compelling it becomes.
So TJ let me come over last week to hang out with her and my Uncle Chris and Cousin, Madelyn, and watch her paint. This might seem weird, but it was a blast watching the paint dry. Seeing her look at the canvas and create something beautiful out of nothing is amazing. Not to mention TJ has the same dry humor as I do, so she laughs at all my jokes, which makes me feel good about myself.
The painting she is working on above is something she is planning to display at her next show. A painting like this takes weeks to finish, and because the weather outside was frightful, she is painting them in the living room. While her finished products are awesome, even the practice paintings were cool:
For some reason these paintings fill me with joy, and when I speak to her about them it’s exciting to hear the pride she has in her work. She didn’t stumble into this idea herself, though. My uncle Chris has been encouraging her to do a Pollack style painting for years. So please, wives out there, take this as a lesson that, yes, your husband’s can, in fact, be right about some things. (That last sentence just made a record for most commas ever)
If you are interested in seeing, or even buying, one of TJ’s paintings, she is having a show on November 7th in Annapolis where she will be showing a bunch of them. Here are the details (please write checks to Frank):
November 7th – 5-8pm
West Annapolis Art Works and Fine Framing
4 Annapolis Street, Annapolis, MD, 21401