Jodi’s Blog ... From the Artist’s Heart — painting



Wild flowers and John Prine.

I was twenty something when I first heard a John Prine song.  A summer day on the back of motorcycle.  Backroads of Wayzata, Minnesota.  A place where songs, if you really heard them, were written just for you. A part time model and handyman was driving the Indian motorcycle.  (Maybe he too, was just hanging on.)  He was every cool kid I never dated in high school.  The sun was back-of-the-neck hot and the music that played in our helmets said, “I only wanna dance with you” … and I felt pretty.  Not like in the magazines.  Not photo shoot pretty – but wild flower.  Side of the road, blowing in the breeze, captured in a passing glance from a...

Continue reading



The memory of tools

My husband is working to remove the rust on his father’s tools.  Gently with vinegar.  And maybe more than taking away, he is revealing the memories they hold.  I believe they hold.  Most of the things built are long gone.  But the memories are there.  They say we humans have a muscle memory.  I think it transfers to the tools we use. I got a pair of used brushes in Brittany.  They easily became my favorites.  They held on to the paint, and just as easily let it go, like they knew the drill.  It wasn’t their first time.  They had been asked to release the painting again and again.  My hands were familiar, and new.  What a comfort to be...

Continue reading



Unnecessary

Our humanity lies not in the ordinary. We do the things we have to in order to stay alive. Alive. But to really live, we have to do the unnecessary. We create extraordinary things. We gather ourselves in music and art and dessert. And this is where we really live. And oh, how beautiful. This beautiful stillness. It was never necessary for an apple to be beautiful. It could offer the same nutrients in a plain package. In fact, we could take vitamins, and maybe get the same thing. But there it is for us, in all of its unnecessary beauty. The brilliant ball of red, and green and yellow, that fits perfectly into the palm of your hand. What...

Continue reading



And then...

Painting these every day is such joy. And it is surprising how much you can learn, every day. To see how yellow is not just yellow, but green and brown and white and red... It's like when you paint skin tones... and you see that there actually is no black or white... just a multitude of colors, and to achieve this feeling of life, of depth behind the colors, the skin, the peel, you have to be loose, free, and let it just happen. And then the beauty comes. And maybe that's the line right there, "And then the beauty comes..." Today, it might be in the letting go, it might be after the rain, it might be after the...

Continue reading



The Call

I listened to this podcast on NPR a couple of days ago. Here is a summary of the program by Chris Kavanagh: This week’s episode of the popular NPR podcast This American Life featured a touching story (available to listen to here) about how some people in Japan who had lost loved ones in the 2011 tsunami were making a pilgrimage (of sorts) to a phone booth on a hill in the town of Otsuchi in order to ‘speak with’, or more accurately send messages to, their deceased relatives. The so-called ‘wind phone’ (kaze no denwa) is comprised of a simple disconnected rotary phone which is located in a white phone booth that overlooks the Pacific ocean. The phone is...

Continue reading