If you’ve never had an artist for a friend I highly recommend you find one, especially if you are artsy.
Celeste has been a friend for over twenty years, tho we’ve rarely spent time together since our late teens we have a kindred spirit connection. We don’t even know each other that well, because we didn’t grow up together, we stumbled upon each other. My most memorable time with Celeste was when we went camping in Jasper, quite ill equipped, and nearly froze to death that August weekend. August in the mountains at night is no joke.
We went cliff jumping & hiking the longest trail I’ve ever hiked. The boats on Maligne Lake looked like ants. The mountain air was so crisp up at the top of the mountain we hiked I truly thought we may freeze to death, being far more summer dressed than mountain dressed. The sun was not sufficient to fight off the ice up there.
Beyond that camping trip, we had a few fun times & I knew she was artsy. Her mom was a local artist & a total character. Her brother was warm & quirky like her, and frankly I could have adopted them all as my own.
This kinship just happens, and rarely at that. It’s not a friendship based on history, childhood or otherwise, it’s a friendship that feels more comradely. Artists all have a deep similarity. They are striving to pull the insides of themselves out; why— only God knows. The drive of artistry is fairly normal I think, I believe we are made that way. But people who were born creative have been told negatives more than those driven by more classically ‘successful’ pursuits. Creative people have a vulnerability & fortitude, both so strong, you cannot tell if they are weak or strong more. They are equally weak & strong.
We were born this way. Sounds cliche but it’s entirely true. My first desire in life was to be an artist, it just was. I don’t feel this desire was properly fostered & nurtured. I was repeatedly told it was not a worthwhile endevour. What a terrible thing to tell a child who is born creative.
Rather than brainstorm how to channel your creativity into a worthwhile pursuit, it was viewed as a futile waste of time. To this day I have guilt over spending time on creative things. My logical self says one thing, my heart another.
Celeste is an example of someone who slowly & surely all her life, has built a creative haven for herself. She doesn’t really sell enough to make a living at it, but she is passionate about what she does and she continues working at her craft. She’s had a gallery showing & has told me how it was what she thought she wanted only to feel it is not worth all the hassle of it. Artists must self promote mercilessly which, many of us just have the hardest time doing. We would rather just do the art and have people understand us through our art, which ever media we’ve chosen.
All pictures below are of paintings by Celeste Rode. The painting of Spitfire was a gift & is one of my most cherished possessions. I’m so thankful for having an old friend & artist in my life.