|Last painting of 2011|
Happy New Year to all of you who go for that sort of thing. I mean, isn't November to November a whole year? Do we say "Happy New Year!" on someones birthday? Why not? Didn't a year go by since the last one? No, we wait until we get a new calendar from the oil or insurance company before we grasp the concept that we've just moved one year closer to the one they'll notch on our tombstone.
I'm sorry-- all of that was a result of my New Year's Resolution this year to be more crotchety. It's a stepping stone to my ultimate goal of being a curmudgeon.
We just took our Christmas decorations down, and I'm feeling wistful for the holidays already. I'm not a nostalgic person per se, but I do enjoy tradition. I'm "Old School" in everything: I play golf with old-fashioned blades for clubs, not new-fangled "game improvement" irons, I like baseball played on grass under a summer sun, or football on the frozen tundra, not in a dome. Hell, even my painting technique is swiped from the old traditional 19th century types. So for the month of December, I listen to the same Christmas music I've played for decades, and adorn my house with the same decorations year after year. For one month I transport myself to a time and place that's not here and now, but then and always. It's like taking a month long vacation from the world. But now I'm ready to get back at it, and start making something of this new year.
I'm not a huge fan of Pablo Picasso, but I do agree with a quote that's been attributed to him. When asked which one of his (horrid) paintings was his favorite, Pabs replied, "The next one." I'm sure we can all dig that.
For myself, on the damn too infrequent occasion that I paint a real good picture, I can't wait to paint the next one. Will it be the continuation of a trend? And when I paint a picture even my Mother thinks sucks, I'm chomping on the bit to paint the next one. Will it get me back on the right track? The new year is "the next one," isn't it? If I had a good year last year, can I keep it going this year? If I had a bad last year, will this year be better, or continue the trend? The damn thing about it is we won't know until next year. Half years don't count. A good start can always finish bad, and a bad start always has room for improvement. We won't be able to tell until we get that calendar from the insurance company telling us to get ready for the next year.
My Cannon Power Shot S3 digital camera -- 2007-2011.
Last weekend, my faithful sidekick took it's last photo for me. That camera spent a year being covered in fish scales and guts when I worked on a lobster boat. It's been to the Caribbean twice. It's photographed snow, summer, rain and rainbows. It's recorded good times and beautiful sunsets. It's taken something close to 15,000 pictures. And if I hadn't dropped it on the ice last week, it would have taken thousand more. Sure, it was only 6 mega pixels, and the flash didn't work all that well. It was also bulky and cumbersome, but it went everywhere with me.
Here is the first photo I ever took with it:
And the last:
So, R.I.P. old friend.
I'm sure the next one will be much better!