Alaskan Artist - Elise Tomlinson
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11/26/2004: "Silent Night?"

Tonight my friend who lives up the road came over to see if I wanted to go to the lighting of the Douglas Christmas tree. She is the only person I've invited up to see what I've been working on and I was pretty nervous about it. I've been working in a bubble for weeks now with no feedback and I have no idea if this stuff is any good.

As we walked up the stairs to my "studio" I implored her to remember that these were all works in progess and they'd look a lot better when they're finished. She seemed to like the pieces overall and had some nice things to say but then on the walk (a block away) to where the tree was being lit, she said "I thought it was going to be a lot worse". Hmmmm, how to interpret that?

As for the tree lighting, they had little tents set up and had pipers playing christmas carols out in the rain. Let me tell you something, you ain't heard nuttin till you've heard "Silent Night" on the bag pipes (For some reason bagpipes are very big here, especially for anything requiring a touch of ceremony). The pipers practice across the street from me, indoors, and even with my windows shut I can hear them easily. Man, that sound can carry.

They were also serving free baked goods with hot cider or cocoa. Did I ever mention I took bag pipe lessons when I lived in Anchorage? I had to stop because it seemed to aggravate my arthritis but it was fun while it lasted (and no, I haven't purchased the quilter's gloves yet Holly, but soon)

I looked around and saw Frank, my mechanic whose shop is across the street from the church, his nephew who was in my LS110 class several semesters ago, Pat (the owner of Louie's Bar next door to me) who did the officiating...I just had this moment where I realized how many of the people in the crowd I knew. It was a very "Stars Hollow" moment for me, but I liked it.

Replies: 6 Comments

on Saturday, November 27th,">Jackie said

I just found your site a few weeks ago and I just really enjoy it. Your art is GREAT! Don't ever let anyone get you down about it. I do art myself and I know how it feels when you get an odd comment about stuff you've done. Keep up the good work and Good luck. You really have talent. :)

on Saturday, November 27th, Elise said

Thanks Jackie! I'm trying to stay on the positive side and not panic, I spent 8 hours today, non-stop, working to finish one small painting. I have so much more to do. A few words of encouragement go a long way at keeping me trudging forward. I appreciate it!

on Sunday, November 28th, David said

The comment your friend made was so funny! Remember how you told her about the work not being finished. You probably DID make it sound a lot worse to her untrained eye. (I think its funny anyway.)
But perhaps you should help this person understand and appreiciate art, anyones art more.
I am kind of a evangelist myself.
I found your site a couple of days ago and I enjoy it very much. Lovely art work and a truly interesting and refreshing blog.
Stay warm E.

on Sunday, November 28th, David again said

My blog link didn't seem to go thru so I'm sending it along with my website info.
Blog site...

on Sunday, November 28th, Elise said

Hi David, you know, you're probably right about the comment. I'm too sensitive when it comes to my work and so I can end up interpreting things the wrong way.

My friend is great and she never would have said anything intentionally mean or hurtful. I probably just talked about how behind I was etc. so much that she wasn't expecting me to be as far along as I was.

Anyway, that's how I choose to interpret it now.

As for your site, I really enjoyed your photography. In particular, the black and white biker standing in front of blue tinted bikers, the old men on the street watching the girl in the polka skirt walk by, and the red tinted pears to name a few.

You know I'm originally from O'Neill Nebraska, i still fly through Omaha every year on my way home for Christmas...also, there is another photographer named David Loyd who's blog I read and who occasionally reads this one. Only, he spells his last name Lloyd and lives in Wales. His photography is really beautiful as well. You should check it out, he goes by "Dirty Dio".

on Sunday, November 28th, The other David Loyd said

Thanks for the comments and the link. Feel free to call next time you're in the Cornhusker state. I live very close to Eppley.