Beauty

“Sun-Kissed”
Oil on Panel
9×12″
2013
I don’t know a lot, but it seems to me that this much is certain – life is messy.
No matter how hard you try, there are things that don’t go your way, things that don’t fit into a tidy box of how a perfect life should look. Some days – some seasons – are hard. And sometimes, life can be so heartbreaking that it’s overwhelming. But through all of this I find my life punctuated by moments of sublime beauty – moments of goodness that make me thankful to be a living, breathing part of this world.

I lost my sister a couple of years ago. She was far too young to die, and the whole thing was unexpected and awful, and I miss her. Since then, I’ve found myself more purposefully seeking out those moments of beauty. In darkness, I suddenly felt more gratitude for those infrequent glimpses of perfection that seem to make the messiness of life so worth it. I found solace in music, in art, in climbing the hills around my home, in the easy smiles of my kids. And as I immersed myself in those things, it seemed that things got better, bit by bit. I stumbled along, gathering up these happy moments like beads on a string, until I had created something that had started to resemble a normal life again.
It might be a piece of music that brings tears to my eyes, a masterful painting that gives me goosebumps, or a sunset that stops me in my tracks and makes me still. It might be nothing more than a good laugh with friends or my children’s warm hands in mine, trusting. It might just be the way raindrops ripple across the surface of a mountain lake on a summer evening.
I drink these moments up, greedy.
I wish I could capture these things in paint. Someday, I want to transcend the mundane details of sales and technique, and translate that gut feeling though pigment and color. I might be working on that for the rest of my life, but that challenge is what makes me love what I do.

28 thoughts on “Beauty

  • November 11, 2013 at 9:45 pm
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    You have to live a life before you can paint it. You are doing that very well. And this post is not too deep. Just deeply felt.
    Nice work. On both.
    Louise

  • November 11, 2013 at 9:45 pm
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    You have to live a life before you can paint it. You are doing that very well. And this post is not too deep. Just deeply felt.
    Nice work. On both.
    Louise

  • November 12, 2013 at 2:21 am
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    This beautiful painting captures a special moment in time. Love it.

  • November 12, 2013 at 2:21 am
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    This beautiful painting captures a special moment in time. Love it.

  • November 12, 2013 at 2:28 pm
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    Thank you for the kind comment about the painting – this is kind of out of my wheelhouse, but it was a summer evening I wanted to remember =)

  • November 12, 2013 at 2:28 pm
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    Thank you for the kind comment about the painting – this is kind of out of my wheelhouse, but it was a summer evening I wanted to remember =)

  • November 12, 2013 at 3:54 pm
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    Precious are the glimpses of love and beauty. "like beads on a string" is a prefect.

  • November 12, 2013 at 3:54 pm
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    Precious are the glimpses of love and beauty. "like beads on a string" is a prefect.

  • November 13, 2013 at 4:40 pm
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    Truly wonderful post. If more of us stopped to "drink these moments up" the world would be a much better place. Thank you for sharing.

  • November 13, 2013 at 4:40 pm
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    Truly wonderful post. If more of us stopped to "drink these moments up" the world would be a much better place. Thank you for sharing.

  • November 14, 2013 at 1:26 pm
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    Your graceful prose articulating what many of us artists feel about 'the why' we paint took my breath away. I am sorry for the ache in your heart for your sister, but it seems you have found joy in the things left that matter. I think this painting is just splendid and alive, Stacey.

  • November 14, 2013 at 1:26 pm
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    Your graceful prose articulating what many of us artists feel about 'the why' we paint took my breath away. I am sorry for the ache in your heart for your sister, but it seems you have found joy in the things left that matter. I think this painting is just splendid and alive, Stacey.

  • December 9, 2013 at 3:17 pm
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    Stumbling on your blog post via a Fine Art Newsletter by Keith Bond this morning is a gift. As I prepare for my Fathers Oncology appointment today where we will be finding out just how many months he has left to live, I marvel at the timing. Words in both pieces I read this morning gave me the mental readjustment I needed to get to this meeting with love, strength and less fear. Life is messy sometime but I certainly do find much beauty in even this circumstance that I find myself in at the present moment. Your painting "Sun-kissed" is a slice of heaven which radiates love and beauty and has touched my soul. Thank you for your blog and your wonderful work.
    Peace, Coko Brown

  • December 9, 2013 at 3:17 pm
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    Stumbling on your blog post via a Fine Art Newsletter by Keith Bond this morning is a gift. As I prepare for my Fathers Oncology appointment today where we will be finding out just how many months he has left to live, I marvel at the timing. Words in both pieces I read this morning gave me the mental readjustment I needed to get to this meeting with love, strength and less fear. Life is messy sometime but I certainly do find much beauty in even this circumstance that I find myself in at the present moment. Your painting "Sun-kissed" is a slice of heaven which radiates love and beauty and has touched my soul. Thank you for your blog and your wonderful work.
    Peace, Coko Brown

  • December 9, 2013 at 4:32 pm
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    My Mother always used to say life is what you make it. Like a painting we need contrast in the details of our lives to appreciate it as a whole. I'm very sorry for your loss Stacey but you are definitely on the right path. Thank you for your observations and I love the way you capture the light in your compositions beautiful work stay strong.

    Alan Rutherford

  • December 10, 2013 at 1:58 pm
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    I am so happy to connect with you, through the post of Keith, loved the way you use colors, and this is a beautiful work.
    Sorry for the loss, ..
    hope you get loads of happiness in the coming year.
    Take Care and All the Best!
    http://razarts.blogspot.in

  • December 10, 2013 at 1:58 pm
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    I am so happy to connect with you, through the post of Keith, loved the way you use colors, and this is a beautiful work.
    Sorry for the loss, ..
    hope you get loads of happiness in the coming year.
    Take Care and All the Best!
    http://razarts.blogspot.in

  • December 10, 2013 at 7:27 pm
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    Stacy.
    I recently read your post via Keith's article on FASo.
    I am so sorry for your loss.
    I lost my sister years ago and truly understood that my art 'saved my life'..15 years later there's still that whole in my heart but I find such great joy and transcendence from the BEAUTY in NATURE that my spirit is renewed daily.. My cup of gratitude is overflowing and this is the best tribute to my sister I could ever dream possible!!..It has truly been an inspired life! Namaste! carolG

  • December 11, 2013 at 2:52 pm
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    Stacey What a beautiful piece and reading your post brought tears to my eyes. I read something recently about artists only talking about art and not their own stories. Thanks for sharing your story and your heart.

  • December 11, 2013 at 6:31 pm
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    Thank you so much for all the kind, understanding comments everyone! I'm glad to know that my story resonates with other artists. What happens in our lives is what shapes our art. Happy painting all!

  • December 16, 2013 at 11:36 am
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    Stacey-
    You write as well as you paint, exquisitely. Being able to express in words the feelings you want to convey in your art is something most artists struggle with. You certainly have a gift for it. I think we all already see a difference in your work. I am looking forward to seeing more.

  • December 16, 2013 at 11:36 am
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    Stacey-
    You write as well as you paint, exquisitely. Being able to express in words the feelings you want to convey in your art is something most artists struggle with. You certainly have a gift for it. I think we all already see a difference in your work. I am looking forward to seeing more.

  • January 3, 2014 at 2:17 am
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    Thanks so much for the kind words Peter – I really appreciate it!

  • January 3, 2014 at 2:17 am
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    Thanks so much for the kind words Peter – I really appreciate it!

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