I couldn't find my water pistols, a clear sign I haven't played with them enough in recent times. I always enjoyed running around after my little brothers and splatting them on hot days. This developed into something of an arms race with bigger and bigger super soakers and the garden hose. Good times. I'm not too old for this but maybe they are?
A different brother came over and saw this painting. "Do you think it's appropriate to show your brother a naked Ken doll?" I laughed. "He doesn't have any genitalia!" I protested. "Well, alright then." Bro sat down and contemplated while I finished doing whatever it was I was doing.
Ken was trouble for me in this painting. I needed reference, and I didn't know I needed a 1969 model. I spent hours looking for my first love and learning stupid doll facts which had nothing to do with my early memories of stealing Ken from Sis1 and Barbie, or was it Tammy? Who cares? That bimbo didn't have anything to do with my relationship with Ken. I envied her car though. Ken and I had a pedestrian relationship because I was sure Sis would miss a car theft while she didn't seem to notice an absent Ken.
This painting isn't really about those early years, but clearly Ken made an impression on me in a way that manifested in later times. I won't explain it. Make conclusions however you'd like about him being featured on this canvas. The larger point is that we carry our past with us. Some of that's great, some of it's heavy baggage.
I like to think of the year end as a great time to drop that baggage so I can look forward to the new year as a fresh start. Issues properly addressed and filed give me more head space to think about happy stuff like playing Mother May I with my sisters or squirting water at my brothers in the yard.
This painting took me a long time to do, though most of that time was spent sitting around and pondering instead of painting. I told my brother I think it's too busy, but he said all the busyness is interesting. What do you think?
The main thing for me is that finishing this painting was liberating, exhilarating. I literally danced around the living room for a while in my happiness. Issues addressed and done, a lighter load for 2019, and I get a painting to show for it!
Maybe there will come a year end when all of my issues have been addressed and I'll just paint flowers, but until then I'll keep making these paintings. I like sorting through my thoughts and memories and especially love the happy feelings of completion and accomplishment. May everyone find their own project they like doing as well.
And yes, I have a lot of siblings with 2 older sisters and 4 younger brothers which makes me a solidly middle child in a very noisy house. I so envied only children, but then I wouldn't have had a sister from whom I could steal Ken. Or, maybe Ken would've been mine in the first place? But then I wouldn't have had anyone to shoot at with the water gun or with whom to play Mother May I. Maybe it all comes out as a positive?
I hope everyone had a pleasant Christmas (or holiday of your choice) and has a wonderful, exciting, fulfilling, and happy New Year!