Home > Dispatches > Daily Dispatches 2018 >Daily Dispatch #288

October 15, 2018: A New York State of Mind

I spent the early and later part of the day with two amazing friends and artists, the first being Susan Harris and the second being Jacqueline Welch. In between, I made another transition, taking the train from Syracuse to Buffalo. I of course wished that I was taking the train cross country as I did the last time I was in this area. But alas, this time I don’t have four days to spend doing this. By plane, I can get home in 17 hours. This is an amazing time difference.

I did enjoy the shorter train ride. It was overcast, and the scenery so-so – there is for instance little noteworthy about the

Dog from women's march -- photo by Susan Harris

backside of Rochester except for the Kodak clock tower. And I had horse magazines that Susan had given me to read.

Susan’s main area of artistic endeavor is horse illustrations. She’s illustrated her own books (and as well those of others), and these days she does most of her work on computer. And Jacqui’s main area of artistic endeavor is dog paintings. Her small and large paintings have been on exhibit in several galleries locally and throughout the state. And Like Susan’s work, Jacki’s work is on display in her home.

In the room I am staying in at Jacqui’s is a large painting of a white dog that looks like a husky-shepherd mix. He looks like he hasn’t had a good meal in some time. He’s sniffing a milk bone. Behind his head is a halo. Above, a human-like angel is tossing chocolate pieces out of a basket, in his direction. These pieces are falling from the sky, onto the landscape below. To the right of the angel is a restaurant building that’s shaped like a dog. Jacqui said that she got the idea for this from a building that resembles a dog. Jacqui incorporates what she calls thought bubbles into her work. These phrases give her work a thematic focus. The one in this picture reads “In the midst of difficulty lies opportunity.” This seems to me to be a reminder that good things come out of hardship.

To the left of my bed is a cardboard greyhound. Jacqui once did what she called an interactive installation, and so these pieces have moveable legs. There is also a very small painting of a bandicoot on her door. It’s standing on its hind legs, and has a rather devote pose. It’s looking at a painting of those gathered at the nativity scene. The colors in the sunrise behind this scene are the same as those in the bandicoot’s ears, shades of yellow, orange, and light blue.

I could spend hours looking at Jacqui’s work, for the more I look, the more I have to think about. I only get to see her work when I’m visiting her; although I do have two of her paintings at home. The first is entitled The Patron Saint of the Enthusiastic Ego, and it is of our dog Bootleg. And the second is entitled Night Owl, and is of an owl standing in front of a cube. The cube has a ball bearing at its center.

Thinking about Susan, and thinking about Jacqui – how fortunate I am, to have such artistic friends.

Next: 289.10/16/18 The Centrality of Kindness

Horse Care Home About Us Dispatches Trips Alys's Articles