My Family’s Artistic Afternoon

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This past December during my thyroid surgery recovery, my mother-in-law, who is a brilliant artist, spent some quite time with me.  She inspired me to try my hand in painting. She brought over her supplies and bought me a canvas.

“No rules,” she said. “Just chose colors you love and go for it!”

So I took her advice. And it turns out, one of my favorite gifts to my children (and to myself), this past holiday season was an artistic, creative afternoon that we shared in our backyard in Malibu.

Right before the holidays, I went to the art store, and like a kid in a candy store, bought a bunch of supplies and a canvas for each of my children.  And in addition to all the typical material gifts they received, they each got a blank slate with a bow – and a promise for some one-on-one time to create their own special masterpiece with me.

Then, one sunny afternoon, I set everything up in our backyard, put on some great music and said, “There are no rules but one – have fun and use your imagination.”

I helped them pick their own colors; I rotated their canvas from time to time, and let them have at it.  Rain decided to work on mine with me.  It was so fun to share this experience with my kids and watch them find a different way of telling a story. 

Here’s how Rain and I started:

What’s not intentional, however, is the unique way many beautiful painting are created.

Shaya’s piece is amazing! I helped him chose some of his colors and cover his background, then he went off on his own.  He loved it so much that he quickly asked to start another canvas.  I tried to teach him patience and the possibility of evolving one painting till he was satisfied.  He continued to add his favorite colors and it changed every 15 minutes to a new story only he could define.

After a while, Rain began her own canvas and spent most of an hour just covering the background.

David joined us later and started his own canvas.

Something about that afternoon reminded me what can happen when we take chances and use our imagination – I had no idea how much the kids would enjoy it, and how committed they would be.

As for me, I have always been inspired by art; certain collections influence my fashion sense and set the mood in many rooms at home and at work.

I imagined myself painting many times, but I have no experience and had no idea how to get started.

Who knew that all I needed was to carve out the quiet time and take a chance?

It was therapeutic, fun and I totally enjoyed it.  I’m not sure my painting is quite there yet – it keeps evolving – but hopefully it will be worthy of sharing one day.

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