Posts Tagged ‘Photos’

by Bettye W. Harwell

encaustic wax with rice paper

The circle is the purest shape. It is the earth we live on and the space we are enclosed by. The human body can be recognized by the many circles that compose it. Our mother’s womb to her protective arms encircle us whether in reality or in our memories.

We may have to look at our fathers for the circles a bit harder, but like the earth, he is the symbol of protection. His circles may, like the mothers’, enclose and exclude. By keeping the bad stuff at bay, the child in us feels safe.

At least that is what should happen. We play at night with the shadows on the bedroom walls knowing that the morning will come again. We can cry in our pillow and yet, by morning be refreshed, ready to be IN the circle or to BE the circle.

Nurturing can be observed with the mother bird in the porch light. She does not go far from the gently swaying chicks. If danger comes, her flight diverts the danger but soon she is back to feed and comfort the little ones.

And sometimes you can observe the father bird! He sits on top of the fixture, he is wary of changes from the outside that might endanger the young. He listens to the mother singing to and with her babies.

Who knew?

Each year, this cozy spot provides a place to nest, the perfect circle.

Mother Bird

Mother Bird

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Thanks so much for your posts and for re-reading Nella. The Morena St. house underwent some changes after I took photos when researching the book. I’ve forgotten the professor/administrator’s name, but he did the work in the 1990s, so fairly recent history.
Bettye, it is great to see you off on yet another project. You are amazing. I am glad to see that you are feeling so much better.
Many thanks for sharing. This is fascinating to re-visit after so long.
Love, Thadious

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Alan Waterfall

by Bettye Harwell

Two things reminded me of a summer weekend in Sudbury, MA. The first was receiving a photo card of Whitmore Falls taken by Patrick Zephyr, 2001. Thirty college and recent graduate students invited ourselves to our friend’s home in 1947 so that we could attend a Tanglewood concert.

We had come together from many colleges to participate in a YM-YW Students-in-Industry summer project.We lived in a Hartford Seminary, CT building with a professor from Bates College. With him was his wife and small daughter. Ten of us worked at the Underwood Typewriter Company where I was a ‘part straightener.’  Others worked in other industries. At night local leaders came and spoke to us about work and citizenship.   We shared housekeeping and cooking. After each dinner there were plays and hilarious activities planned by a committee.

A few days ago I was told that young people are getting back to typewriters. This was the second thing reminding me of the friendships that have endured from that summer. After being the city mouse visiting the open beauty of Massachussetts and seeing the Whitmore Falls, I paint all waterfalls from that memory.

Whitmore Falls

Whitmore Falls (Photo credit: thigpen.robert)

Who Knew?

Please check any Underwood typewriters carefully before buying. I might have been the part straightener. We have had good laughs about our lack of skills at demanding, routine factory work.

The card I received has a website:


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Photo of abstract painting and artist

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Woman with Umbrella

By Bettye W. Harwell

Yellow Sweater

by Bettye W. Harwell

Learning from bloggers

Marketing, marketing and more marketing requires as much creativity as the artist’s output. The term ‘artist’ should cover any creative discipline. We know there are people working in who have no desire to go public. The doing is enough.

Then there are many who want and need to share. The reasons vary.

Do you want to communicate to get feedback?

Are you interested in critique or to get a mentor?

Do you need to test the financial viability of your work?

Writers will find interest in a blog tour to promote a book. It has been tested with success. Visual artists use all or part of this plan if helpful.

Have you tried promoting through an online event? Please share (comment or post). Did you get a boost in sales directly from your efforts? Would you repeat? What worked the best? Failed?

Read this post for inspiration on marketing:


Resource for oil painters

A new blog to me is soooo good! Today the post tells all about paint made by just one man in North Carolina. The blogger tests and compares quality and costs brilliantly. He tells the story of Indian yellow. The old version caused artists to want to eat it with a spoon. (not really.)

Who knew?

We found two tubes in a dusty old store in Kentucky ten years ago. Three paintings show the brilliance and depth of this old version. Check out his comments on turquoise and black. It will make former oil painters give it another try.


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by B. W. Harwell

Dr. Howard Thurman

Image via Wikipedia

This painting was inspired by the preaching of Rev. Howard Thurman. His theme was often these words:

I cried because I had no shoes, until I saw the man who had no feet.

He was a very eloquent speaker and was available to youth groups, such as the college YM-YW conferences.

Some words stay with you and guide your thinking about life.

Who knew?

This painting, part of a group of works, was donated to a public housing community center in Nashville, TN. Other artists painted murals and provided a variety of their crafts when this building was restored. Local children and staff created tiles for the foyer.

Obelisk in front of King Chapel dedicated to H...

Image via Wikipedia

Howard Thurman's Great Hope book

Image by Fellowship of Reconciliation via Flickr

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Memory, Sharing…

Memory, Sharing

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