Before I was married to an artist, I saw the world in simple colors.
Green was green. Whether it was your run-of-the-mill fescue grass you find on suburban Canadian prairie lawns or the coarse baize covering a billiard table, the color was simply green.
Same for blue. Whether it was the crystal-clear sky on a cloudless day or the inimitable, googly-eyed Cookie Monster, the color was simply blue.
“Yay, networking,” my artist wife said last September.
She was sitting in the corner of our living room in her navy blue easy chair. She had completed a mural the previous week. In my super casual, completely stealth, I’m-hunting-for-story-inspiration way, I was asking her about how the opportunity had come about in the first place.
Apparently, the opportunity to paint this mural came about quickly. And it came with the added pleasure of collaborating with another artist.
It was an early spring morning. The sun had risen two hours earlier. The birds were chirping in the 10-foot conifer outside our bedroom window. And the sky was crystal clear over our lazy crescent in our western Canadian Prairie suburb.
I was peacefully lying awake in bed, enjoying its body-hugging comfort early that morning. Our son was playing video games in the basement family room while our daughter was at the kitchen table creating yet another pencil drawing to add to my growing collection of “daughter art.”
It never stood a chance.
We recently renovated our kitchen and the last piece was the kitchen table.
The old kitchen table was a giant, dark brown behemoth that served us well.
Many family meals were enjoyed there. Christmas breakfasts, Easter dinners, and birthday cakes came and went.
Let me make one thing more clear than a blue sky on a cloudless day: When it comes to her art business, my artist wife does the heavy lifting.
We agreed early on, shortly after she left university, that if she was going to take a run at being a successful artist, it would have to be her making the run, not me.
Nearly 15 years later, I still cling to that agreement.
“You should write a story about me, daddy,” our confident and creative daughter told me shortly after I launched this series.
She’s a regular reader of Saturday Morning Stories and gets a kick out of reading about her parents. Her favourite story so far is The Kandinsky Curriculum. I’ll let you guess why.
She’s eight years old and enjoying the glory that comes with being in Grade 2 — still young enough that she’s not jaded about having to go to school every day but old enough to give her parents enough daily sass and eye rolls to fill an Olympic-sized swimming pool.
She’s also a chip off the ol’ block.