“She’s Got Plans”
I have a background in theater costume design, so my paintings often have stories behind them, like a scene from a play.
I’ve thought a lot about subtext through the years — Subtext is that thing that a person is saying to themselves while they are saying other things out loud.
The thought that this character had her life plan tattooed on herself captured my imagination. Her rooms were to be named for secret thoughts or hopes, or fears, things she was dealing with or refused to deal with. All that subtext right out there for everyone to see. I needed a strong character, and I found her and added this layer of a blueprint or floor plan. I was not intending this project to be autobiographical — didn’t start that way at all.
Sometimes I get stuck in concept land — where the concept and the way the painting comes together just don’t gel. Paintings get set aside, and are later revisited, sometimes trashed, sometimes layered over with better ideas.
This painting took awhile because I started it just before I met my husband. It waited patiently for me, while I spent time getting to know him, and while I changed and my hopes and dreams changed. He and I found ourselves collaborating to rename the rooms
The floor plan became more hopeful, more autobiographical, and a stronger painting. My hope is that the image is strong from a distance, that it invites you to look closer and when you do, her thoughts, her “subtext” is revealed.