A couple days ago after having dropped my daughter off at school, I thought it was high time I began my foray into spontaneous drawing.  There’s a mill along the path of my usual commute so I decided I’d stop there.  It was pouring rain and “weather” was another of those categories of things I’ve been telling myself that I should take more notice of as regards my drawing ambitions.  Thus spontaneously I decided to circumvent my plans and drop by the mill for a bit of sketching by the river.  All I had was a little notebook I carry in my purse and assorted pens, but it was to be a “what the heck” adventure in seeing.

I listened to the radio.  I drew.  I commented to myself that these were not especially interesting little sketches, nothing much to look at, that I was going to have to learn a graphic vocabulary, sort of like what Van Gogh learned and used, if I were ever to get serious about landscape drawing.  However, those thoughts didn’t bother me any.  The whole purpose of what I was doing was to “see” more than to get results. 

I made a few of these things.  After a bit, I decided “okay, enough, it’s time to go.”  Turned the key on the car.  Nothing happened.  Tried it several times more.  Nadda.  The very rain that had prompted me to change plans was now putting a big crimp in my new reality:  I’m stranded, it’s pouring, and I haven’t even had breakfast yet.  (Note: never do the spontaneity thing on an empty stomach.)

Well, fast forward.  I made a phone call.  Got rescued.  We bought jumper cables and drove back to my car.  I leaped out of my husband’s truck and on a lark put the key in the ignition, turned it and — voila! — it started!  Has been running just fine since.  Go figure.

Back nestled in the dry warmth of home, I made a little sketch in oil pastel based upon the line drawings from the site.  I’m wondering whether it was quite worth the trouble, making these drawings, buying jumper cables, going without breakfast, for these little impressions.  But Van Gogh says “you have to suffer for art.”  On a suffering scale, I must admit (very gladly) that these inconveniences and automotive mysteries do not rank high.  So, I won’t complain.

But I have a new rule:  no spontaneity until after breakfast.


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