The Ice People
One day, shortly after Christmas I was taking a Winter walk with my oldest and youngest kids. We walked by this lawn where thick, thumb-like icicles had formed over the blades of grass. I took a picture, wanting to remember the scene because on first glance, what I saw was a village of ice people peeking their heads above ground.
Last week, as I was starting on Week 2 of my Watermedia Exploration, my oldest daughter, joined me, in her chicken onesie, at the kitchen table to eat her breakfast. She said to me, "Are you going to paint one of those every single day this year?"
"Well, that's my goal," I said, still not sure if my commitment was doable.
"That's cool," she said.
I had her look through the first week's paintings, and I asked her which were her favorites. The LaLaLoopsy," she said. "But I like the Buddha too."
"You're like me, you like the ones with eyes. I like things with faces too. And you know, I want to start drawing my own, and I think I'll get there, but right now, I'm still too scared."
Later into Week 2, facing down a fresh blank piece of 4.5" x 4.5" paper, I remembered my photograph of the ice forming on the blades of grass. Without hesitation, I drew the thin rainbow like arc in pencil. Rather minion-esque, I thought. The rectangular pokey hairs were next. Before I knew it I had a person, my first Ice Person, and I knew his name immediately - Gerald. Gerald eats radishes like they are candy, I said in my head, surprisingly myself with this intimate detail. While I painted him, I refused to give him a red tie, which was my first pick, because I realized Gerald would think red was a little too flashy.
"Is he a thumb?" my kids asked.
"He is rather thumb-like, but no, he's an Ice Person."
Next came Crystal, who walks on her tiptoes.
How can that be? I wondered. The Ice People form as though they are growing out of the ground. Do they even have toes? I decided it didn't matter. Her essence is that of a person that would walk on their tiptoes, always.
My youngest asked me if Crystal and Gerald were "wives," meaning, Are they married? To which I answered, "Oh no, I'm not sure if people get married in the Ice Village." When you're making up a world, there is so much not to know. Fascinating, really.
My third creation was Pretzel. The name was begging to be used because when I was telling Tony about Crystal, he misunderstood me and thought I said Pretzel. Pretzel is a perfect name. So this is Pretzel and he plays the harmonica. He's very good at it.