Watercolors- The Mockingbird


I started this last month, but hadn't finished it.   Watercolor, very wet, with pen and ink at the last.  I like very wet watercolors a lot-- you're using form and color, yes, but you're also playing with water, guiding an element, producing a sort of fossil, like a recording of motion and gravity.   I also like starting pictures with no clear understanding of what I'll be producing.

I saw this today, partially finished, lurking in my office/studio, and I knew.  There's so much that pisses me off about the mockingbird-- it so incessant and inconvenient, and it deprives you of sleep.  You don't ask it to sing, it just does, whether you want it to or not.  And yet, over the years, I've written many poems to it, some before I knew what it was, some after reading up on it.  It has often seemed like the perfect muse, purely song.  Something that can annoy me that much and yet deeply please me at the same time must have some real value to me.  There's a true flute in its voice.  It draws and draws me.  If a falling star were to have a voice, or the breeze at night a body, perhaps for me it would be the mockingbird. 

I actually painted this listening to him.  Oddly, I seemed to have to paint this upside down.  For the longest time, it was flame and roots, fire shooting up.  I saw, later, that the image made so much more sense, and was better composed in some ways when I saw it as water and leaves, so I turned it and inked, and dared to see if it was a mistake.  Perhaps I'm water and leaves, when I think I'm flame and roots?