I love painting portraits, but the process of painting my mother was an interesting experience. I knew her face so well. I had snuggled my own face against hers since I first came into this world. I should have been able to paint it with my eyes shut.
But what was I projecting? When I stood back, she was smiling … yet up close she appeared to be scowling!
Dad complained that I never filled in her pant leg. I told him, “That’s because my relationship with Mum isn’t finished!” Mum liked it, but Dad grumbled about it all the time.
When I look at the painting now, I feel I’m in the presence of my mother. I no longer see a scowl—I just see her smiling and I feel her love.
I guess Dad would say my relationship with my daughter isn’t finished yet, either … since I never filled in her shirt.