Recently, while riding my bike in the morning, vivid emotions and memories flooded over me. Memories from my painting days in Provence, France. Every morning, I would wake up early and start my walk to the studio. I listened to the hustle and bustle of traffic: honking cars, screeching brakes, swishing of buses lowering and rising. The world started its day. The smells are what I remember most; the mixture of diesel with the sweet scents of jasmine and juniper as well as roses and other floral scents. As I got closer to the studio, the sounds became more faint and the sweet smells became more vivid. I would become very excited. Would I find myself in the fields looking at Mt. St. Victoire or country homes, or walk amongst flower fields that I would decide I had to stop and paint. Finally, I would make it to the studio and the aromas switched to herbaceous tones of thyme, rosemary and sage mixed with oil mediums and paints. I always had a cup of rosemary tea made with a large fresh cut sprig steeped in hot water. This I loved. It was so beautiful and kept my mind free and vibrant. Then, my art day would begin. After finding the place to paint, I would get lost in my surroundings; transcending from a practical place to an emotional and instinctive one. By the end of the day I would have completed a painting. Another day in my journal of art.
On this particular morning in Portland, I was riding under cherry blossoms, smelling sweet scents of jasmine, wysteria, roses, mixed with fumes from the cars and trucks bustling about, buses in full force. The sky has invited me in to a new day with its morning lavender glow. The warm light hits the pink blossoms and orange and green leaves. the day for the world has begun. And so has mine, with the same yearning question… "what shall I paint today."