The camellias bloomed all through winter - even when the temperatures dipped quite low lending color to our otherwise bare yard. The hardy evergreen bush put forth a showy display of red flowers that reminded us of the diversity and magic of life all around. I used a paper that was tinted with color stains from washing off a forgotten failed attempt at painting something. I didn't have to worry about facing the stark white paper this time and got on with the task of painting. The result was 'Winter Beauty' in watercolors - 8x11". The flowers though bloom whether someone notices or not.
Speaking of noticing, the March issue of Smithsonian magazine has an article on Jan Lievens, a friend and rival of Rembrandt van Rijn. According to the article "Out of Rembrandt's Shadow", both were apprentices under the same master and may have even shared a studio and models in Leiden early in their careers. They even modeled for each other. In fact, many paintings by Leiven, like ' The Feast of Esther', were misattributed as early Rembrandts. Finally there is an exhibit that establishes his reputation as an old master. As to why Leivens didn't shine like Rembrandt, author Matthew Gurewitsch seems to feel that he 'didn't create a brand.' Really? Somehow I feel its because of the quirks of the art world that his talent went unrecognized. His talent and beautiful paintings were always there in full view. Recognizing and honoring talent and genius seems to be hit and miss so often.