Mention the name of Gauguin and images of a Tahitian paradise come to mind. His poetic imagery captivates the hearts of all. Behind the facade, a troubled family life lays in ruin. Gauguin deserted his family to pursue his artistic passions.
Van gogh’s “Sunflowers” immortalized his art and are revered by most. Yet his co-dependent lifestyle almost drove his brother Theo to bankruptcy.
Like most artists, I struggle with finding a balance between relationships and my art. However, my passion for lighthouses has driven me a little closer to my family. During the summer I was able to enjoy the best of both worlds.
I went to a family reunion in Biloxi, Mississippi then painted a lighthouse nearby. While the family toured New Orleans, I painted two lighthouses. One of those was Port Pontchartrain Lighthouse.
When my family visited the Aviation Museum, I painted the Pensacola Lighthouse. A compromise often works best for artists.
I did face some bumps along the way. I opted out of dinner for painting the Gay Head Lighthouse in Martha’s Vineyard. It wasn’t my original plan but a missed bus caused this dilemma. Still, my family was gracious and sent me a boxed dinner.
With over 400 hundred lighthouses to go in the USA, I’m sure there are challenges ahead. So far I’ve delayed painting lighthouses to provide assistance to family members. I must admit it wasn’t easy.
My Pastor at church said we should value relationships over tasks. Yet he admitted struggling with that. I realized then that not only artists struggle with balancing relationships.