This is the third oil painting in my new series for 2023 “50 Oil Paintings Inspired by Joyful Living”, for the section called MUSIC. The first painting was “Mountain Dulcimer“, the second was “Tap Shoes” and now this third one is “Ballet Shoes”. I’ll share videos of me playing the dulcimer, tap dancing, and teaching ballet in the near future on this blog.
The journey through joyful living will bring stories about life events, hobbies, and beliefs that make me happy, but are also universally joyful for humanity in general (such as music, even if you don’t share my specific areas of interest). Some chapters are light and basic, others heavy and spiritual. Some projects are fast/short, others are longer and more intense. There will be a mix of highly detailed, realistic and powerful art, as well as loose, easy, watercolor-like pieces (like these first three in the MUSIC section).
Most will be painted at home with only the camera as my audience, others will be for live shows. As in the past, the plans for this collection will change when inspired by something unexpected. A joyful life is flexible and open to new directions.
I hope you are enjoying the approach of spring. I’ve been busy landscaping and gardening, but still fitting painting in. I plan to pick up the pace and make faster progress on this year’s collection. I have to work fast if I want to make my lifetime goal of 1k finished oil paintings!
This painting was an experiment. A talented indie composer shared his work online and I asked if I could use it to paint what I see when I listen to his beautiful composition. This was the result.
It’s hard for me to put into words what this emotion is. It’s when we have a peaceful soul that can’t be shaken by temporary circumstances, earthly hardships, or any other setback. It’s a state of being that is expressed by “it is well with my soul”. And then, one day, a beautiful laugh is shared between loved ones, or a spontaneous encounter in nature occurs- like seeing a rose opening, a butterfly or hummingbird flitting past, or deer curiously peeking at us from a clearing- or we hear good news that changes our lives forever, and that’s when this joyful moment melds with a peaceful soul: our happiness bubbles over, creating freedom that dances in a floral forest.
Today I experienced a few moments that felt alive with such energy that it was “almost” time for a dance like that. I am so close to being HOME after so many years of temporary living. It’s still not a done deal and it could all fall through, but what if- no matter how horribly this forced move journey began- everything goes according to plan? Let the dance begin!
“The Christmas Dance”, a special moment dancing with my husband during last year’s Christmas show. Little did I know how much our lives were about to change. It’s hard to recognize these moments when they happen, but sometimes the awareness is there at the time- something stirring in the heart saying, “Remember this always.”
God bless you and keep you, now and forever. As it is the week before Christmas, please keep a candle lit inside your soul. Let it shine before others.
“Savannah is lush with tropical plants, flowers and palm trees, but the area also has a surprising amount of evergreen forestry acreage, as well as hardy wild flowers I was familiar with in Northern climates. I didn’t have to give up my favorite trees, and in fact, am surrounded by them (although the trees and tropical flowers aren’t typically together in the same place like depicted here in this fantasy scene).” -about oil painting “Dancer in a Floral Forest” from book “50 Oil Paintings Inspired by Savannah, Georgia” by Natalie Buske Thomas
List of Oil Paintings in the Savannah, Georgia collection, linking to their pages here on the site, and also citing physical pages in the hardcover book: