So, THIS was the cow...THE cow that I first painted. She has a story b/c she kind of launched my art career. If you are unfamiliar with career launching cows, then read on, my friend!
About 3 years ago, I started haunting the famous Gallery C during Chloe's ballet classes. There, I met the illustrious Mr. Kershaw. Skeptical of my talent at first, Mr. Kershaw proceeded to whip me and my art resume into shape and things have never been the same. At Gallery C, I attended my first art show (I felt SO grown up!), I was educated in how to sign my art, think about art, consider art, interpret art, etc....some things stuck, some...not so much! BUT, I am and will always be eternally grateful to Mr. Kershaw for introducing me to the art world, with all of its strange nuances and quirky, but lovable people.
So, what about the cow? Weeeelllll.....a bit before Christmas, I was in the gallery and Mr. Kershaw approached me with a gleam in his eye. How would I like to submit a cow painting for a Gallery C customer? The catch was that Mr. Kershaw had promised this customer a choice of a number of "cow" paintings and he didn't have enough cows! Hence, the request. I was SO excited! I was going to paint the best cow that I could paint! Maybe I could pretend to be a REAL artist whilst I was painting said cow.
Rushing home, I looked up cows and cow pics on the net....what is the shape of their eyes, ears, what angle should I paint it? Should it have a background, a field or barn? I finally settled on the whole "cow with personality" idea, sketched and painted this lovely lady, naming it "Bovine Romance".
I had VERY little money, but I bought a Michael's frame, framed it and tentatively brought it into the gallery. I was SO nervous, I could feel my heart thumping as I walked through the door. They were all matter of fact in there, taking my darling cow that I had agonized so long over and plopping her down on the floor. I walked out, feeling kind of foolish. After all, some of the other cow paintings were painted by artists who had their art prominently displayed in national art museums! REAL artists! Who did I think I was? My silly cow seemed so juvenile in comparison.
Weeks went by and I heard nothing. I had moments when I just wanted to rush into the gallery, snatch her up and whisk her back to the oblivion that I lived in. (Dramatic? yes.)
One evening, we had family over for dinner and the phone rings. Chris answers and hands it to me. "It's Mr. Kershaw!" he whispers. Nervously, I go into the office.
"The client chose your painting, Cady!" he sounds pleased as if his protege has finally accomplished something worthwhile. My jaw hit the floor. I hang up and hug Chris as if I've won the lottery or something. I really only made $150.00 on the sale, not including the price of the frame, but I think that at that moment, I realized that I could actually go somewhere with my art. I could be successful if I really applied myself!
I'd always been so intimidated by artists who had degrees and who had formal training. I had nothing but determination and a dream. It was a definite turning point for me....this cow painting...who managed to win a sale from a Gallery C client.
So, I am exceedingly fond of this cow. I've named her "Marie". She went on to win me a cover interview with the Society of Children's Writers and Illustrator's Pen and Palette Magazine. She was my first magazine cover.
She's my lucky cow. In honor of her memory, I've repainted her this weekend and I think that she's getting better with age. I've learned a lot since I first painted her.
So, here's to Marie! May she enjoy many more years of advancing my art career and may she please a plethora of cow fans in the years to come.
Thanks, Marie Marie! (Her middle name is "Marie", too) (strange? yes.)
I'm a wife and mother of four kids. I homeschool, paint, run, and garden! I am always interested in digging truths out of Scripture. Here, you'll find my thoughts on art, adoption, gardening, mothering, homeschooling, books and whatever else is on my mind. Enjoy!
Creativity doesn't exist in a vacuum - like skepticism, it's a means, not an end. It cries out for a theme. To treat creativity as an end in itself is to assume godlike character for humans as though they could create ex nihilo. -J. Cheane