The Reading Room

My head came up with a vision for a room. The kind of room where a person can really relax. Or listen to relaxing music. Or look out the window as the snow falls silently on the trees. Or take a nap. Or write a novel. Or, you know, read.

The Reading Room would have comfy chairs, dark bookcases, and a piano. In my mind, the children would be content in their quiet camaraderie on the carpet while I tapped out a few choice numbers on the piano (“Thank God I’m a Country Boy”; “The Search Is Over”; “Adon Olam”), the husband reading the newspaper in an armchair.

As my Reading Room came together — a lamp over there, a pair of chairs over there, an army of nesting dolls over everywhere — I realized that it needed a little something. You know, that extra something that would really make the room.

Art. I needed art.

More specifically, I needed art that depicts a scene from literature.

I started hunting the internet for art that depicts a scene from literature. I found lots of Shakespeare and Poe and Alice in Wonderland, but not a whit of Du Maurier or Oliver Twist or Grapes of Wrath.

That is when it came to me: why not create my own art? I mean, come on, how hard could it be to whip up a nice painting that represents the best of literature? How hard could it be?

I laugh at the sillyliss who was having these thoughts, because sometimes it’s like I don’t remember who I am. How hard could it be?

Above are three of the prints I ordered before deciding that I would create my own art. How hard–? Wait, yeah.

You’ve seen what I’m capable of: exploding marshmallow rice krispies; bad haircuts; bad art; bad hairstyles. Yet not only did I make this — I actually had the gall to frame it and hang it on the wall next to the other real, true, actual pieces of artwork.

If seen from very, very far away — across the entire room, perhaps — it really doesn’t look all that bad. And now I’m working on my “please, sir, can I have some more” watercolor. I can’t be stopped! Because how hard could it be…?

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15 responses to “The Reading Room

  1. If somebody says something bad you can always pass it off as your kids and they’ll feel horrible for saying something bad about a 5 year old’s obviously amazing art.

    • Sage advice. They might guess that anyway. Which makes me think that perhaps I should have my actual living-and-breathing children start creating art based on literature for me. “No, no, the sirens should be over here and Odysseus should be doing this like this! Oh, just give me that paintbrush!”

  2. Is that house on fire? Is is supposed to mean something? I like the passing it off as the kids’ idea. πŸ™‚

  3. Nice work!

    A scene from the Great Gatsby?

    • That one is from Rebecca. I reallllly want something from Great Gatsby, but I can’t think of anything to draw. The website Sarah listed above has a really cool poster for Great Gatsby, but it’s like $70 plus shipping from the UK!

  4. I already knew it but this once again proves you have great taste cause that is my favourite book of all time!
    As far as the artwork goes……I like your depiction of the car πŸ™‚
    Did you read the unofficial sequel to Rebecca? By Sally Beauman? I really loved that too.

    • I think if I had used a different medium, it might have turned out better. I used…Emilia’s markers. Heh.

      I have not read the unofficial sequel, but I will add it to my to-reads right now!

  5. Try using chalk pastels. You can get a much more even color with them and you can rub them around and do gradients. Afterward, you’ll need to spray it with a sealer, though, which is smelly, but you can do it outside. If you want to make something really dark and creepy, use charcoal–cover the entire sheet with it and then erase away to get the highlights you want. It’s fun, and no amount of sealer will keep your hands clean afterward (but it’s worth it). πŸ™‚

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