...by my mom's hands. When I was little, her long fingers and blue poppy veins, almond-shaped fingernails which she would buff, never paint, and her long palms connected to those beautiful fingers, hands which she used for a myriad of things, gave me constant joy. Mom's hands are deceptively strong - she's not a big woman, but her hands are mighty. When she takes your hand to hold - she has always been a hand-holder and I'm sure because of her, so am I - her grip is astonishingly firm and strong. Perhaps it's all those years holding pens, pencils, brushes, molding clay, knitting, crocheting, cooking, gardening, petting dogs and cats, ironing, and the hundreds of things an artist's hands do that strengthen. Even now at almost 90 (almost 90!), her hands intrigue me. When she started to get arthritis, which amazingly has not hampered her art or ability to hold pens and pencils, she was fascinated by what the arthritis did to her hands and how it changed their shape (and as I sit here writing, it just occurred to me that she has never, not once, complained of any pain if there, indeed, is any. A trait my mother has had her entire life - I have never heard her complain about anything. It's almost unreal, but I'm telling you the truth). She drew her hands countless times as drawing exercises and it's so marvelous to see her hands change as she's drawn them over the years. I recently visited Mom, and we sat talking, looking out the window, laughing, singing, and I watched her use her hands so expressively, as she always has, and it gave me a feeling of comfort and well-being. She hasn't been inspired to draw as of late, so I decided to sit with her and coax her a little. I drew a line, she drew a line, and then I watched as she critically looked at the paper and traced with her somewhat gnarled beautiful finger where she thought the next thing should go. She was easily distracted, so we only drew a little, but that was a great delight on my visit. These are Mom's hands and our partial drawing.
Sending you inspiration today for whatever may need a nudge. You never know where your next great idea will come from, do you?