Mothers and Others

“At The Ag Fair” 8X10 oil on panel

For mothers and others, Happy Mothers’ Day.

I did this one twice. One version was direct- no drawing first, except with paint. The other one, was painted over the drawing from last post. Do you have a preference?

” At The Ag Fair ” 11X14 oil on panel

My nemesis, interpreting white without using white. Tricky.

No, what’s really tricky is how the responsibilities of raising families, which is often  multi -generational, meal preparations, cleaning, shuttling kids to school and back, baking and cooking at night to make extra money, seems an impossible juggling performance but the stalwart women of this island and perhaps the West Indies in general, get it all done. And still find a moment to share an observation with a good friend. And sit for a minute.

A tribute to all Mothers who put love in our pockets, hearts, lunchboxes, and DNA.

Nurturing comes from unexpected places….

Seemed like Motherhood was evident here too…. maybe too soon to cut the cord.

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22 Responses to “Mothers and Others”

  1. Judith wolfe Says:

    I love both pieces but love the top one more. It has a bit more heft and I like heft. You asked, I told. Wishing you a very Happy Mother’s Day from your surrogate loving sister in the Big Apple.

  2. Donald Diddams Says:

    Is this a poll? How does one chose between two lovely paintings?
    I am attracted by the lively colors in the second one like a moth to the flame, but keep coming back to the first for the gesture and tone of it. Maybe that’s the “heft” Judy is talking about. It also looks more like a classic Luria to me… so there, I picked one.
    Now are you going to paint those eggplant before you eat them?
    I think your dogs are in love!

    • Bonnie Luria Says:

      I’ll keep a secret ballot until the comments stop coming. Thanks Don, for being the diplomatic poll-ster.
      Sadly, those eggplants look better than they cook. As pretty as the variegated ones are, they’re hard and dry for grilling. Meant more for stewing over long durations.
      I can say with certainty, that there is dog love happening here. Just ask ME!

  3. Nancy Moskovitz Says:

    Bonnie, you have kept both loose as only you can do. The bottom has fresher colors but I’m betting you did that one second. Ergo the result is more from having figured out what you want to say than from using a drawing or not. Love ’em both.

    • Bonnie Luria Says:

      Astute as always Nancy. I seem to learn more when I repeat a painting. A big lesson was the handling of white. I focused on warm/cool greys to convey her stark white dress. Have you ever done two of the same and offered them for sale?

  4. Sam Says:

    I like the first one best. Yes, they’re both really good, but whether baked first or longest, the first seems to be more satisfying. Nice and loose but a better tighty whitey… er, you could say, a mighty tight white.

  5. CarolKing Says:


    First Let me wish you a Happy Mom’s Day and hope that you are having a swell time today.

    Love the post and those damn dogs are so cute I can’t stand it.

    Now, about those paintings. I like that you did it twice. Very cool with two great results. The top one looks more “traditional” and the bottom one looks a bit more contemporary, if those words mean anything. I like them both, but I think I’m leaning towards the bottom one. I like the figures and you can see the man’s face a bit better while still keeping the image loose. The colors are a bit brighter in the 2nd one as well, which I like.

    Grrrr, can’t chose, but if I must, I’ll say door #2.

    • Bonnie Luria Says:

      Carollaaaa, did Kayia surprise you with a gift yesterday? The same one she gives you every day?
      Was a great day- out with a friend and her mom for lunch and floating on a raft in her pool in the afternoon. Kelly stayed home- worked and baked 8 loaves of bread.
      Your explanations really ring true for me- I think without realizing it, that you’re right in describing their appearance.
      For me, though, it’s like asking me to choose between cake or pie. I like both for different reasons. Often at the same time.

  6. lesliepaints Says:

    Happy Mother’s Day, Bonnie. I like both paintings, but I love the second one. I like the brightness of the orange and the light in the background. I am fascinated with your brushstrokes in your paintings and I can see those more readily in the second one. Dog picture! I come for the dog pictures! Smile.

    • Bonnie Luria Says:

      Thank you Leslie. My asking opinions has done something to help me think about how I put paint down. It’s interesting to me that there’s a split rather than a unanimous leaning. Tells me that I don’t need to be boxed in to one way of expressing strokes.
      What IS unanimous is how we all feel about these dogs! Thanks for stopping by again.

  7. Marian Fortunati Says:

    I like the second one. Can’t really tell you why, but I do.

    I also love that little kissy photo of your two little doggy friends.

    • Bonnie Luria Says:

      Marian- I value your opinion and share that little understood reasoning. We don’t know why, we just do. The analytical viewing of something can negate the emotional response we hope our art evokes.
      I sometimes find that same analytical approach a hindrance when I’m painting. If I think too much about the ” science ” of applying paint, I get stunted.
      I’m keeping the polls open for more comments……

  8. Melinda Says:

    Well, Bonnie, I’ve read the comments and am compelled to vote for the second painting. Now, this doesn’t mean I don’t love the first, in fact, I love the more subdued colors in the background that gives the portrait a peaceful ambiance. Yet, the energetic treatment of the second, along with the layering of expressive color, really works for me.

    Beautiful work, both of them!

    Lifting one stone each day. With you…

    • Bonnie Luria Says:

      Melinda- isn’t it so interesting to see how other eyes observe and absorb.
      All the comments and observations have given me greater objectivity in analyzing what works and what doesn’t.
      Another reason to love this blogging community.
      Glad you liked them both.
      Off to lift some stones today….

  9. w1kkp Says:

    Well, there’s just a quiet intimacy about the first one that I’m drawn to. But, I’m a wee bit confused. The details of the face in the first figure in the foreground appear to be female but on the second appear more male but the body looks female. Am I having sexual identity issues? Also, in the fist one the background figure appears to have her arm around the other in another suggestion of intimacy but in the second that appears to be gone and the arms on both figures in the center appear fused. So, that’s it from the photographer I’ll go back to my shutter cleaning.

    I can so appreciate the challenge of painting white without using it! White as seen on John Singer Sargent’s dresses or J.E.Turner’s sails on the great ships 18th century as well as skies in many of his pieces are a master class in that. If you can find some on-line that are large enough any one of them could be Exhibit A in how to do it.

    I once saw the enormous Battle of Trafalgar as a part of an exhibit here at the MFA in Boston. It was the first time this huge painting had traveled. I swear to you I looked at his sails and thought to myself, “I’d like to live my life how this man paints sails.”

    Ok. I’m done now.

    • Bonnie Luria Says:

      Oh, and PS- you’re right about the two arms looking fused together. I didn’t see it as much in the painting but in the photo is sure shows that way. Some adjustments coming up pronto.

  10. w1kkp Says:

    It’s JMW Turner, of course. Oi. JE Turner is an accountant.

  11. Jala Pfaff Says:

    I like the 11 x 14 one best. And great job with the white.

    Pretty orchid too. I miss mine–I used to have over a hundred, but our greenhouse had too many issues and I ended up selling almost all of them off.

    Little Miss Clousseau…so cute.

  12. planetross Says:

    I like the second painting more … not better … just more.

    “A tribute to all Mothers who put love in our pockets, hearts, lunchboxes, and DNA.”

    true, true, true, and true.

  13. Bonnie Luria Says:

    Ross, I’m really fond of that use of words. More not better.
    Glad you said it that way.
    Ahhh, mothers.

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