Connections & Celebrations: Oh what a night part 4…

Martha's Vineyard color inspiration

Dear Tina & friends,

I just returned on Monday from a wonderful long weekend at Martha’s Vineyard with Brett. My sister Tina was vacationing on the island with her husband Chris and staying with her in-law’s who live there. Brett & I felt fortunate to have them invite us down for a visit. We easily slipped into “island time” and found ourselves sleeping in, going to the beach, shopping, dining, picnicking and hanging out on Chris’s Aunt Sandra & Uncle Fred’s cottage porch. They live on the island as well and spend most of their summer at their quaint, gingerbread cottage in the campground. It proved to be a favorite place to stop when we were out and about as it is centrally located downtown. We found ourselves there sharing stories over cocktails and having an amazing time as these are special people.

I have to say it hasn’t been easy getting up these past few mornings as I was longing for the island. In some ways I am eager to get back to my routine and I was missing our new little  kittens. The island left me filled with inspiration which you can see in the photo collage above. I have more to share but will save that for another post.

connections & celebrations with friends

*these are a few pictures from my opening. You can see more from the show HERE

Often I will pick a book from my bookshelf and randomly open it to a page as I did this morning. Usually it ends up being exactly what I need to hear or experience. Today Twyla Tharp held that magic for me. I opened her book, The Creative Habit to this thought…

Metaphor is the lifeblood of all art, if it is not art itself. Metaphor is our vocabulary for connecting what we’re experiencing now with what we have experienced before. It’s not only how we express what we remember, it’s how we interpret it—for ourselves and others.

~ Twyla Tharp

blissful daydream_wm

“Blissful Daydream” acrylic on wood panel, 12 x 12 inches *available

As my solo exhibition comes to a close this Friday, I was thinking about how I was going to finish writing this four part series (you can read it from the start HERE). Twyla’s quote really resonated with me. The fourth series is called, Connections. I think it touches upon what Twyla was talking about. This painting of the fishing buoys is one example. I found them  on an adventure while visiting my friend Sue at one of her vintage shows. I really appreciated the worn texture of the wood and the faded paint. I sketched and painted them many times and “Blissful Daydream” is what emerged. This painting is about allowing my thoughts to wander and noting what bubbles up. Creating it gave me an opportunity to reflect on my life and think about the important people and moments I was experiencing.

TransformationOptimistic Heart, acrylic, 36 x 48 inches

Painting grounds me. It is where my busy mind slows down and where I practice trusting my intuition. I often begin painting as a meditation so they are very abstract. I have no expectation for what will come next and allow ideas and connections to come to light. Often wine bottles, coffee & teacups emerge in my work and will most likely reoccur. They have become a metaphor for conversation, deep listening and what can be learned by spending time with others.

Time with friends III

                Time with Friends III, 6 x 6 inches, mixed media, *original & print available

Diana, Krissy & I at Lighthouse Gallery

My friend Diana is holding one of the collages she bought. It is always super exciting when one of your artist friends values your work! The other sweet gal is my friend Krissy! SO blessed to have such good friends!

Life's Joy

                          Life’s Joy, acrylic on wood panel 12 x 12 inches * available

Nature plays a huge role in my work as well. I am very inspired by the evolution of change and spend a lot of time in my garden, sketching and photographing what I see. This too slows me down and helps me understand how everything is interconnected. I then translate these drawings in my work in a playful, imaginative way that comes directly from my heart. I use color to express the joy and excitement I feel. I truly believe in looking at the bright side of things and strive to find happiness in the world.

safe haven_wm

If you didn’t get a chance to see my show you have until Friday to visit The Lighthouse Gallery before it closes. I hope these little snippets give you an idea of what I was striving for. If you did make it to my show I cannot tell you how much that meant to me! In fact my heart is still so full. There were so many people who traveled so far to support me and I honestly cannot thank them enough! Sending you a sunshine & love…Laura

p.s. If you would like me to send you a brochure with the listings and prices from the show email me your address at laura.gaffke@me.com

p.s.s. You can read the rest of this series here….

part one

part two

part three

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