Out of the blue


Ellen Moerschel, originally uploaded by leyaevelyn.

When I was visiting Tamar last October, I received an email from Ellen Moerschel, a recent art school grad. She had seen my work and offered to help me in my studio. I had been saying for years I needed an assistant. Ellen has been extremely helpful: with the silkscreening (knows much more than I do about it), with stretching and priming canvases, and with the collaging.

I keep thinking: could I be doing all this–the big painting and all the work in my studio–without her help. Of course the answer is yes but with much more difficulty and time.

Last Tuesday we plastered the primed canvases in my studio with silkscreened images. As the photo-images are very personal, it is hard to go in there and see the faces staring at me. But that’s what keeps me going–the desire to bury the past, make something good come from it. It’s fertile ground.

I don’t believe in closure. Emotions are a bottomless pit. One of my favorite Buddhist sayings is “Change your attitude and relax as it is.” Yet with my painting, it’s not that I want to relax; rather, I want to charge them, invigorate them. And with these paintings, that comes from my personal experiences. I don’t find it upsetting but it’s not always easy.

And on a side note: when Ellen washed the screen outside because my studio sink is too small, the blue printing ink ran into the snow and ice. And it’s still there.  Rather fetching, a blue walkway!