Art and Illustration by Naomi Rose
In addition to being a writer and book developer, I have been blessed to be given other artistic gifts as well.
One of them is singing (I have been in 3 semi-professional choruses and 1 professional)....
And the other is visual art.
Both of these come into play in writing (believe it or not). Seeing the scene in the mind's eye helps bring the words into being. Sometimes I even make sketches on a drawing pad to stimulate the movement of the writing. Images bring things to the surface more readily, and link seemingly disparate events and insights.
(More on this later, in "The Writer's Storyboard"--soon to be available in "The Creating & Comfort Store.")
Art in its own right has a place in my life. I've been sketching since I was in my teens. I used to sit on the New York subway and surreptitiously draw people across the aisle. It did no harm, and it fulfilled my homework (I went to a special school for artists) and taught me something about slowing down to see.
For a long time, my sketching, drawing, and painting lay dormant. Sometimes, for decades. But what's really yours never goes away. Recently, I've felt a desire to bring my art into the world, too.
So here are a few of my drawings. I hope to include others, soon, as well.
Door into Inner Landscape
You'll recognize this painting. A watercolor, it is the portal to this website.
And it appears on other pages as well.
I did it to express the pure place we get to reach into,
in order to bring our treasures into the world,
and the flowing out of those treasures into the world beyond the door.
This is my husband, Ralph.
He ends up modeling for me a lot.
(Sometimes while he's just reading. Though in this drawing, he was actively participating in the stillness of being a model.)
And here he is again.
And again (resting lying down).
You wouldn't know from all these resting poses that he's a very active person.
He walks around Lake Merritt, briskly, three times a week,and he used to play tennis.
He still likes to watch baseball on TV (a guilty pleasure).
But when he's resting, or reading, or closing his eyes in contemplation,
that's when he's still enough to be my model.
He's also a very wonderful (and award-winning) poet.
He writes about people, in all their courage, struggles, and glory.
He decided to become a poet at the age of fifty.
Since then, he has been published in over 100 literary magazines.
All this tells me something about the persistance of the soul's desire.
(As well as his innate talent.)
I could have called one of these drawings "The Poet" (see "The Musican," below)
but I decided not to.
I know him in even deeper, more facetedly human ways than that.
An archetypal name would do him an injustice.
One time I did a painting of him when he was resting (or reading, or both).
His eyes were closed.
So I put a background of night behind him, black starry sky with dark green hills,
and our cat Duerme curled in the corner.
I didn't want him to be "eclipsed" by the dark, however,
so I gave him a kind of halo--a gold-greenish body echo.
The first time I hung the painting on the wall, my client and friend Prema
came in and saw it.
"You've painted him as The Christ," she said.
And I saw that I had.
Portrait of a Musician
This is a drawing of my first husband, Richard. (We are still friends.)
Artists draw and paint their families a lot. They are around,
they take poses as a matter of course, and you don't have to pay them.
This drawing I did of Richard somehow reminded me of Beethoven.
I think it was the hair, and the brooding expression, and the flaring nostrils.
So I called it "Portrait of a Musician."
Of course, this was not flattery or just a leap of the imagination.
Richard was a musician.
When I met him he played the oboe exquisitely. I learned a lot about music,
especially classical music, from him.
Later, after we were no longer married, I realized that I was a musician too,
as a singer,
and I sang in those choruses.
But I still like this drawing.
More to come...