"Congratulations to all who entered: I'm sure the considerations involved provided valuable insights for the authors. A number of entrants in this competition submitted well-written, deserving reasons to be awarded first prize. The universal aspect of family values and connections is revealed in quite a few, but my choice is No 14 Durano's because the story and its implications are poignant, yet uplifting. The chance to right wrongs reinforces the importance of hope in everyone's life."
Jan Dean 1st November 2008
and to all of the entrants for your wonderful contributions...
A special thank you goes to Jan, the Judge....
your time and deliberation was very much appreciated Jan...
you can read all of the entries here...
I like to take part in this contest too. I like to win a portrait of my mom.
Every time I look into my mom eyes I know there’s one thing she kept screaming and screaming inside. My lack of present with her, I know I’m dumb! I am near and yet so far. I spend very least time with my mom it’s hard to explain why. I was her gold and I can’t be parted with her when I was young, I would cry so hard that people around me just hate me because I’m loud! I love my mom so much that I just can’t live without her! But that’s has changed, I guess life taught me to be independence and I cry no more and I was so independence that I forgot to go home and when I did, I just don’t know what to do or say. I wish I could still be so close, I like to be her baby again like she uses to cuddle me when I cry, happy or sad. Buy me stuff when I act cute bring to me to every where she go and in her heart I was the number one.
If I win this portrait I will try to make it work again… “Mom I have something special for you and it’s really really special!” I hope to see her shinning eyes with hope and dream again.
2. Daily Blissings
I wanna win this so bad I'm nearly wetting my pants. Ever since Leonie Allan did a customised soul art piece for me I'm now keen to have an original portrait of my husband to sit beside "me" on the wall.
3. Lilly's Life
I would love to win a portrait of my only child, my daughter Jordan. Just to remember the way she looks at a point in time. She changes her style regularly as per this post Message from your Mother so I never know what is coming next. She is the joy of my life even though she lives far away.
4. Sharon Hart
If I am fortunate enough to win, I'd want you to paint my granddaughter's portrait because children grow so quickly that it's important to capture a sense of their beauty and innocence while they're young. I wish I had painted portraits of my kids when they were toddlers, but alas I was too busy playing 'mom' to paint.
One of my favorite quotations is by the author of the Little Prince,Antoine de Saint-Exupery: “A rock pile ceases to be a rock pile the moment a single man contemplates it, bearing within him the image of a cathedral.” I'm not sure that there's a cathedral to be found within my granddaughter, but I'm confident if it's to be found, it'll be by an artist holding a paintbrush. Here's to the artists and to the "rocks" that await their vision!
The Heroic Tardis of Portraiture
Before photography there was a time that only a portrait could capture the depth and clarity of a face, a life, and of a soul. Since photography, portraiture still captures in mankind that which is less fleeting – a great portrait reveals a core that cannot be unearthed in 1/100 of a second. A good portrait preserves an age and a spirit, rather than a moment. In portraiture, art is generated by the synthesis of subject and a formidable painter. Kim, I believe daughter, Mariana, would be a wonderful subject for your commensurate talent. She is my little angel. Sorry for bragging.
Mariana is six, soon to be seven, and she is charming. She can play with dolls one minute and then score a goal past larger kids in soccer. Her eyes twinkle and she has a warm engaging smile. She is small for her age, but she is sharp and friendly and funny. She is photogenic,\ tough and kind. She would love to participate in the creation of a Kim Barker painting, to be a part of your vision and creativity. It would be an honor to your subject. Thank you for considering us…..
PS. To assist I can supply as many pictures as you need and can also post small video clips so that you get a sense of Mariana.
I think I would ask to have my darling MIC captured ... he is father to our wee lads and is a little camera shy ... so I think this would work perfectly :) I even have the spot picked out
How many of you remember the song 'Protrait of My Love' sung by Matt Monroe back in the late 60's? The starting 2 lines go like this, There could never be, ....A portrait of my love...........
There is a such melancholy to hear the song and the pining for the love of his or her life!
For us this coming Christmas, number one on our Wish List will be 'A Portrait of our love'. We want it to be displayed in the family house for our future generation to know that marriage works. We cannot afford to have the portrait painted by re-known artist but hey! there is a chance to have your dream Portrait done for free by re-known artist from Australia!
We would like to have the photo on our blog here to be the subject for the portrait. It was the best smile Rock has since after her stroke and she looks perfectly happy! What a beautiful stroke survivor and it shows there is life after a stroke!
On Christmas Eve my husband and I will be celebrating our 8th wedding anniversary. We eloped to Surfers Paradise and whilst we never had a professional photographer we were lucky enough to have one or two pictures snapped.
It would be so fantastic to be able to give my husband a portrait of our wedding for his anniversary gift.
My husband is my hero, he encourages me to go after my dreams and helps me each step of the way. He works incredibly hard to support our little family and always has time to listen to me ramble on about my day
When I first thought about who I would really want to have a portrait of I thought of my Mother. But then I realized that could cause some hurt feelings and I wouldn't want to do that, though I would love to have a portrait of her. So, I thought, maybe I would like a portrait of my cat, Ricky. He's getting old and I won't have him much longer. A portrait of him would be a wonderful reminder and remembrance but, he is my cat and no one else is as partial to him as I am. Then, it came to me- I would choose a portrait of our old Smokey. Smokey belonged to all of us and was a member of our family for nearly 17 years. He's been gone for two months now and I still keep listening for him to paw at the door, wanting to come in the house. I still cry when I remember that he won't be back. Some would say, "he was just a dog..." and he was, but he was also so much more to all of us. He was a member of our family and he was so loyal. When Smokey was about a year old (we've had him since he was four weeks old), our barn was hit by lightning. Smokey was in the barn. The barn was full of hay upstairs and the hay and the old barn timbers burnt very quickly. When we realized the barn was burning (just a moment or two after the lightning strike) we rushed to save any of the animals that we could. My sister who lived with us at the time was able to free Smokey and we worked at getting the other animals out until the fireman arrived and made us stop. We saved as many as we could but we were not able to get them all. Smokey was not hurt in the fire but he never forgot it and after that he would never even let the girls burn papers on their own. He would go with them to the burn barrel and wait until they were ready to go back to the house. He used to walk over town with the kids and would sit at the window in front of the store until they came out. He liked to watch them through the window and would wag his tail when they were in the candy aisle. Smokey loved candy- especially chocolate. I know- dogs are not supposed to have chocolate. We were never able to convince Smokey of that though and he once ate 6 pounds of chocolate Easter bunnies one Easter. Every night before he would lay down and sleep he would make a patrol through the house, making sure he knew where each person was sleeping. During thunder storms he would sleep for a little while in each person's room. When anyone, and it didn't matter if it was an adult or one of the kids, mowed the lawn Smokey walked beside the mower every step of the way. When the lawn was mowed Smokey's feet were green. We had a big lawn but he never missed a step. There were those who were not fans of Smokey and his vet clinic was full of them. Most of the vets were afraid of him. He would not let them muzzle him to give him any shots that he needed. The vets got so that one would lead him out back and pull his head through one of the headlocks, hanging on tight, while the other vet sneaked up behind Smokey to administer the shot. One day our oldest daughter accidentally ran over Smokey with the pick up. He ran and hid under the house and I ran to call the vet. On the other end of the line a tremulous voice asked me, "Is this for Smokey?" Expecting to hear "Bring him right in!" I told her that yes, it was Smokey that was hurt. She then told me, "Well,you know that they would have to knock him out to examine him and that's not good for head injuries. If he was able to run under the house, and if he's still alive after two hours, I would think that he's going to survive. He did.
The kids used to have a little campfire wood business as we lived close to the entrance of a state park. People used to pull in and get wood, leaving the money in a box if no one was home. One day a very large woman pulled in, loaded some wood in the trunk of her car and before she had time to get back in her car, Smokey suddenly realized that someone was there. He came flying around the corner of the house barking ferociously. Our pickup was right beside the woodpile and the lady must have thought safety was more quickly gained there than in her car. She put her hands on the tailgate of the pickup and her feet cleared it just about simultaneously. I never would have thought anyone quite so large could be so agile. We still laugh about that one.
So, you see, Smokey was way more than "just a dog". He was loved by each and every one of us and is missed terribly by us all. A portrait of him would be a wonderful tribute to his love and devotion to us and a wonderful reminder to us of our Smokey.
Thank you Kim for this very special opportunity for everyone to have a chance to have their portrait done by you. You are a wonderful person with talent extraordinaire. Just the thought of possibly winning this fills my heart with so much happiness.
I started down this road we call life fifty one years ago. And like many, my road has been a tough one to follow. From the very start while still in my mother's womb the pattern was set and my destiny sealed to enter this world with many injustices to fight and over come.
I was blessed by God to be given the strength to fight the battles and win. For that I thank God every day. I thank him this very moment and ask his guidance in revealing my personal story of my life.
I am an adopted child. My biological mother was wild, careless, and would go forward, in life to have three children, of which, she kept none. I am the oldest of the three. I have a younger sister whom I have never met. Since I was the oldest she was never told by her adoptive parents that she had an older sibling.
A younger brother was born five years after me but died within seven hours. I was fortunate later in life to track down both of my biological parents, meet them, and confirm the story of how my life began and why things were done as they were.
My biological parents were in their twenties when I was conceived. They had been living together for a while but were not married. My father, an artist, wanted to get married and keep me. But, my mother did not want the responsibility. So she packed her bags and disappeared out of his life forever taking me along with her.
For many months she lived in a tent on the Sabine river in east Texas with her father in hiding while I was in her womb. What money she made during this time and for a great portion of her life was earned via smuggling heroin out of Mexico and into the United States.
My biological mother and my adoptive parents met through one of those illegal baby mill hospitals that we now hear so much about. This particular one was located in Henderson, Texas. It was closed down years and years ago. But, none the less, hundreds of babies were born there and adopted out. It was the place to go if you could not adopt anywhere else.
Also it was the perfect destination for any young woman wishing to hide the fact of her pregnancy, or to hide the birth of a child when the father would not consent to release parental rights.
So on January twenty third, nineteen hundred and fifty seven I was born. And for the sum of five thousand dollars the name on my official sealed birth certificate was falsified as was my mother's. My father was listed as unknown. The move was very successful. My heritage was stolen.
It would be almost forty five years later before I found my biological father and met him. He died six months after our meeting. He had spent his life time hoping to find me. I thank God to this day that his prayers were answered before he passed away. He never married and never had any other children. He lived his life in solitude with his art. Many of his paintings hang in some of the most prestigious homes and public places in the great state of Louisiana.
For an adoptive child there are so many questions that always linger in the back of your head: What is your heritage, why did they choose to give you away, what medical conditions are prevalent in your genetic make up, and who do you look like? In my case I did discover that it is my father whom I favor the most. And my oldest grandson is a walking twin of his lost biological great grand father. His passing was sudden and sadly I have no pictures of him.
I could continue on and type hundreds of words relating to many more obstacles that I have had to over come due to this illegal adoption. But, I won't out of respect for my parents who did adopt me. The only thing I will say is that they had been denied by the state to adopt for nine years. An illegal adoption was their only alternative.
The reasons for denial through the state were valid, critical and very responsible on the state's part. My child hood was very far removed from anything that could be deemed even reasonable much less normal. They are long since passed away also. Although my life as a child was difficult I still and always will love them.
I have been blessed with two wonderful, intelligent, talented and hard working daughters who both have hearts of gold. My oldest is an Assistant Professor of English Literature currently working on tenure track at one of the top twenty universities in the south eastern part of the United States.
My youngest is a registered nurse who is charge on her shift, in the emergency room, at a large and busy hospital. She is also the mother of my four most treasured and loved grandsons. They range in age from fourteen to five months old. They too are bright and very talented. All of them have the soul of an artist and the natural ability and talent that was handed down from some one that they have only heard stories about.
Perhaps it seems selfish to want the portrait done of myself. But, I have spent most of my adult life trying to put the pieces together related to my heritage. So that my off spring for generations to come will know theirs and where they draw the colors of their lives from.
To be able to also have a true family heirloom, a portrait of myself, painted by some one so special would be the ultimate gift to me, beyond my family, that I could ever hope for in this life time.
For generation after generation my decedents would not only know their heritage verbally. They would also have something tangible to look at. Yet another validation of where they come from and maybe even who they look like.
I would like the portrait of myself. Not that I am vain.but rather for the very simple fact that until I was in my 30's I never had anyone that I could identify with when I looked at a single photograph.
Until I found my birth mother and sister and the rest of the family in the UK and received some photos and was like OMG they look just like me..
For my own two beautiful children I would like them to be able to look upon such a portrait of me and always know where they came from and who their Mother is..There is nothing better than seeing yourself reflected in someone else and knowing that you belong...
I was going to enter this competition but after reading some of the other entries, I realised I couldn't even begin to come up with a reason why I should win that would compare with some of those, I don't envy the judge the task of choosing the winer!
As I already have a wonderful portrait of me drawn on paper which I won here last year (and I think the chances of winning twice are infinitesimal), a portrait on canvas would be a stunning thing to own, however, two portraits of me smacks of vanity!
So now, I have an even bigger problem - who to choose as a subject? One of my boys maybe? But who to choose? They are both so gorgeous in their very different ways - one dark, one blonde - I couldn't possibly choose between them. I have no partner at the moment so that's out - which leaves Milo...gorgeous in all his puppyness, which is going to pass so quickly. I have only owned him a week and already I can see changes. So I choose him so you can capture his cuteness, his puppy scruffiness and charm in your inimitable way. A wonderful moment frozen in time, with more character and depth than any photograph - and a portrait of him would be so suitable for one of your amazing monochrome paintings!
Now I'm off to post about this on my blog....
Kim has offered to do a portrait, a free portrait, worth thousands of dollars, as a gift, a free gift for someone for Christmas. This gift that Kim is offering is PRICELESS. I am asking that Kim paint a portrait of my Mom, Bunny Sherman. Mom will be 85 in January. She just recently had a serious bout with pneumonia. Her lungs have taken a beating from the many years of smoking and her vision is failing. But, she is still very much ‘Bunny’. She is smart, she loves to play bridge, she swims, and she does yoga. She lives in New York City and makes full use of the many services offered to Senior Citizens in the City. She lives a full life, she loves the theatre, going to the latest movie, going out to eat with her friends and family, she loves her grandchildren. She is generous and thoughtful. She has friends from when she was in 7th grade and many, many more from college, camp, when she was an executive director of a non-profit organization, when she was president of the Board of a school for children with Autism and now, has many new friends in her building for Seniors which offers her independent living with lots of bells and whistles in case of emergency. These people, many of them well into their 90’s, along with the ‘young ones’, the staff, were extra-ordinary these past few weeks while she was in the hospital and when she came back to apartment after almost 3weeks. I know that she will be able to SEE Kim’s portrait of her, because that’s Kim’s style, bold and strong, yet capturing the essence, the spirit of her subjects. So, I submit to you, my Mom, affectionately know simply as ‘Bunny’.
I have instilled in my children the idea of looking for signs or gestures that validate or contradict what people say to them; actions that go beyond mere words.
Among them, my eldest, Daphne, was most exposed to this concept, and also bore the brunt of the ups and downs in my career. I always felt I had a lot of making up to do where she is concerned. Such incidents as her refusal to leave the church during her First Communion until I arrived, which was 11 hours later because of flight delays. Or, her refusal to change into her night clothes during New Year's Eve at age 10, and feebly attempting to keep her head up waiting for me till 4:00 AM to light our traditional fireworks. I arrived 6 days later because a civil war erupted in the country where I was.
She knew I didn't want to let her go because I owed her the most. The night before her wedding,she kept asking me if I was comfortable with the idea of giving her away. I gave her assurances that I was, but I believe she was looking for a sign.
I would want her to be the subject of the portrait if I'm fortunate, garbed in her wedding gown. It will be the sign Daphne seeks that says I have graciously surrendered her to her husband - to love, care for, and cherish for the rest of her life. :-) Durano, done!
because it is Music Monday I'm posting a favourite of Charlottes...
she would like to have this played at her wedding....one day...in the future
LOVE - Nat King Cole
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