It is a beautiful day today, after a week of rain and depressing overcast skies. I am thankful. Many days pass and I work and I think of those that have been in my life that have in some way given me some form of inspiration, or instruction that has formed my art. I found out on Facebook last month, that one of the most important people on my art journey passed away. I was shocked to see it and immediately felt a deep emptiness…it was late one night when I saw the post, and I ran outside and looked up at the twinkling stars and felt a comfort and relief and a strange understanding. I believe deeply that we simply transition and if there is anything of us left on this earth, it resides in those that we touched along the way. George James was a fascinatingly fabulous artist, he basically pioneered watercolor on Yupo paper. I was so interested in his process when I first heard of him. I took a class from him many years ago, and was hooked on not only his process but his unending knowledge of design. I went on through the years to take his workshop over and over when I could just to get a chance to talk with him about process, design and art in general. He was always so insightful and such a deep thinker on art issues. This man was the most genuine person I have ever encountered, he had a soft demeanor that veiled a fierce mind. He was an incredible friend and we kept up off an on through the years, but sadly I did not know his health had deteriorated so much in the last few years. I am sad that I was so unaware but not surprised that he did not share it . I will honor his memory and his impact on my art for all the days I have left. I feel so blessed to have been able to have known him and his fabulous art. He and his wife, Isabel were the loveliest people . I have said endless prayers for Isabel as I know how difficult it must be for her. Here is a link to his website : www.georgejameswatercolor.com
Mississippi Art Colony was this past week. I found myself working on a painting with George in mind. When I am troubled, I often work through it in my painting and working in my studio. I somehow felt this would be a fitting way to remember him in paint. He and I both were deeply involved in work that had a narrative, we talked on this subject many times and although this one is less cryptic than most of my work, it is obviously a work built around the things that George employed in his work and that remind me of him. It is my homage filled with pigmented gratitude for all that I learned from this wonderful instructor/mentor. He will be missed but never forgotten.
Last Tea with George by Cathy Hegman
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