Monday, May 30, 2011

When I look back / 回顧


It dawns on me that this year is almost half over. I seem to have been quite laidback in May, but the truth is that I am pretty prolific this month. It’s just that many images belong only to certain moments or specific people. What I wanted to say had sunk into the river of time or the wells in some hearts.


Watercolor classes go on as usual. Lately Jim has been discussing the issue of techniques with me again. Over the past few months, trying to make up for what I lack, I have repeated the basic exercise of using brush pens. That is radically different from my past habit of creating mainly for self-expression. Jim mentioned that being equipped with sophisticated techniques, we can choose not to use them, but not having them will make many painting tasks impossible. I didn’t fully get the message in his words then, though.

Mentally, the two-hour lesson every week records my ups and downs. At the beginning of the semester, I painted a picture in which everyone could feel my impatience. By the mid-semester, I tried to let go of my typical heavy brushstrokes, desiring to start anew with a light, transparent style. I believed that I had calmed down inside whereas Jim said he felt the jumps in me. Well, to put it mildly, I am quite full of life. My classmates or colleagues said I have Chagall and Van Gogh in me, but now I long for Monet’s mellowness. It’s fun that watercolor classes not only provide me with opportunities to hone my skills but also reflect what kind of person I am.


In recent weeks I have been doodling in my kids’ yearbooks. Suddenly the skills that Jim had taught popped out of nowhere on a certain morning. I felt self-fulfilled. It’s like I’ve been sowing for eons, and when I raise my head one day, what’s in front of eyes is totally different.


Sometimes when I look at other people’s lives, I’d wish that I were Ana or Serge, but today I feel it’s good to be me.

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