Thursday, January 20, 2011

One of the best days ever


 Clarity(work in progress)
Acrylic on canvas
Skype painting
24 x 24 inches
Barbara Muir © 2010
(This is the third painting in a Skype series
about the emotion that comes through on a video
call, even with poor reception.  This is the underpainting,
but the overpainting levels will reveal almost total
clarity, or the miracle of modern technology and

Okay.  I actually have two ideas tonight.  Okay, at
least two, but I'll try to confine myself to two.  I
discovered this week that research shows that cold
weather actually makes us happier, our brains
happier than hot weather.  A surprise to me, because
it's very cold here -- but you know I have to admit,
though I'm not a fan of snow in particular, I have
been fairly happy lately.

But how about today.  Why was today so good?  Looking
back it doesn't make any sense whatsoever.  I woke up
with a headache on the back of the left side of my head.
Two aspirins did nothing for it (right away).  But I
doggedly set forth on making a plan.  Sidestepping that
plan only briefly to drink the wonderful Starbucks coffee
(two cups), I made, and read my fabulous novel The Hundred-Foot
Journey by Richard C. Morais. And I did talk to my brother
in Ottawa, and he is almost always funny.

At the printers Chris and Ellen laughed, and asked me why
I was tired, and I pantomimed myself teaching -- which can
be an energetic exercise.  Chris told me that teachers in China
(he's Chinese Canadian) are learning how to be funny so they
can keep their jobs.  This really cracked us all up for no
apparent reason.  But I left feeling so lucky to know Chris and
Ellen, who help me with all my photo reference, and make my
cards and books.  They are fantastic.

Then I went home to paint.  First I stopped by the supermarket,
bought salmon (a mood enhancer) and more of the organic grape
tomatoes I'm addicted to and saw Paula, the cashier who is always
funny and always smiles.  Then I went home to paint.

And here's the second  reason.  I started listening to Sir Ken Robinson
on TED TV who believes we need an education revolution, and I
thought that some of what I do as a teacher, and how I think as a
teacher fits in with what he believes.  I may even have learned
what I know from an earlier TED talk he did.  So while he talked
about the importance of creativity, and how the current world
education system crushes it, and why there is so much apathy in
Canadian schools, etc. (I watched (listened to) several of his videos
after the TED videos, I painted.  And I am very happy with the odd
underpainting I've done.  Now it's bed time without question.  A
frighteningly early day tomorrow.

Have a enjoying-a-creativity-revolution day
We're part of the creativity revolution -- in fact
leaders in it -- right here.  Yay for bloggers.


Kay Christopher said...

I live in Texas. I can vouch for that "it's easier to be happier in the cold" idea. When it is really hot here it is so stifling, draining. It's hard to get up much enthusiasm. Right now it is cold here (it's been freezing lately) and I'm loving it so much! Hope you are enjoying it there, too. And thanks for your paintings, drawings, and blogging. Am so very appreciative!!!!!

Barbara Muir said...

Hi Kay,

Thanks so much. We certainly had that cold theory tested last week with minus 25 Celsius weather before the wind chill. Layers! And then some. Today it was just 3 below zero and I admit everyone was frisky as if summer was coming. Canadians are a cheerful people.

Take care,


Portrait Artist

My photo
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
I paint and draw on commission and for shows. To commission a portrait, or purchase one of my paintings please contact me at:
A major highlight in my career? Drawing Oprah Winfrey live via Skype for her show "Where in the Skype are you? Galleries: Studio Vogue Gallery, Toronto, Canada. The Amsterdam Whitney Gallery, New York City. Gallery at the Porch Door, Kingston, Canada. Your positive comments on this blog mean the world to me. I'd love to hear from you!