Because I worked all day on other things involving Namir, and for the most part my cats were stretched out wherever they could find a cool spot as they have been for days, here is an acrylic painting I did of Namir several years ago.
Normally, I’m pretty linear with working on something, focusing on one clear idea at a time. When I’m learning something new I hit points where I’m not skilled enough to do something and need to either work it out there or outside of that piece, or just stop and let the lessons I’ve learned sink in and get back to it when I’m ready to move on. I began this painting in January 2008 from photos I took of Namir in 2005, I think, soon after I’d gotten a big box of acrylic paints and brushes and canvas panels from a neighbor whose aunt had been an artist. I don’t care for the finish on acrylic paints, much preferring oils but not the smells and chemicals, so I’ve just avoided the entire thing. I decided that the gift of free art materials meant the universe wanted me to paint in acrylics, and I wanted to work with a more dimensional medium—I wanted the brushwork, the impasto of layers and colors, the texture of the canvas showing through the paint.I remembered this photo and got stated.
I hit a learning wall at one point and put it aside to work on commissions. I pulled it out again in April of 2009 when Namir, at 15 with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, was having increasing trouble with congestive heart failure, kidney failure and related health issues, and I know we didn’t have much time left. I wanted to work on the painting when he was still with me. He died in July 2009, and again I left it where it had been at that time.
Namir is gone but I love to remember him in any way I can, and the area where I keep this windowbox is too shady for the colorful geraniums and petunias and marigolds I’d always grown in it. The pleasant memory of him at the window with the flowers is a treasure to spend time with.
The canvas panel, and the painting, is actually larger than this, but I cropped it down to the area of it I like and feel is the essence of the painting. I want it to show what I remember most and what I feel is most important, and I don’t need to show the whole scene to do that as I first thought. It’s a canvas stretched on cardboard, not stretchers, so all I need to do when I’m done is cut out the part I want to use and frame that. I’ve done that with other paintings in other media including other acrylics (see below). For now, I just won’t work on that anymore. That’s kind of freeing!
All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in purchasing one as a print, or to use in a print or internet publication.
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