August 9th, 2014
So, I was having a pretty good day. I had dropped my son Phillip off at school for the day, worked out, puffed on a little green, and gotten down to the gallery before noon. Once I got there I was fairly relaxed and at ease with nothing to paint while waiting on some other things to dry. I started to go though my computer and came across a reference photo of a gladiolus I had saved. I then looked up it's meaning on a florist website that I used for such projects. I thought, "Who do I know that's generous, with a strong character and would be well symbolized by a flower like this one?" My cousin Cherica came to mind. She is very strong and rambunctious for a female and has quite a generous heart especially when it comes to children. At one of my lowest points in life she saw that I was somewhat dying inside and that I had no idea what I was going to do. I had recently contacted an art CORRESPONDENCE course I saw advertised on TV [although, she had no knowledge of it]. Her daughter is an awesome cheerleader and tumbler and as a team mom she wanted give all of the girls a gift. she mentioned it a few times and eventually asked me to make something for them. She knew that I was creative and needed something to AWAKEN me. I was like a mom zombie walking around trying to figure out my next move and taking care of my son as best as I could. The exact day I was starting work on the craft project with her The representative from the correspondence school came to visit me. I will never forget him. He was the actual artist who drew the original Soul Train for the 70's TV show when it started in his hometown of Chicago. The school had a contest where they wanted someone to draw a train and that train was his. He was so nice, gave me great insight and showed love toward my artwork. Once he told me the fees for the school I knew it was hopeless for me at that particular time. However, my cousin not only paid me for completing the craft project but she also paid my first month's fees for the course! This was the most selfless thing she could have done for me. I was just starting to realize I wanted to be an artist again and for her to help me really warmed my heart. As I sat at my desk that day I could not stop myself from creating this painting of her as a thank you. On my way back to the gallery from the art supply store I really became overwhelmed with emotion knowing this was the one painting I had to finish. This is also the only original painting of mine that will never be sold, at least not by me. I will only make prints of it and gift my cousin the original. I love her and I love flowers. Her STRENGTH of character and generosity birthed in me a style of artwork I like to refer to as botanical TRANSMOGRIFICATION; Turning people into flowers based on their beautiful and most notable character traits.