Thursday, June 7, 2012

Hanging Frank

Down came the painting my father did...I don't think he'd mind.

We did a little redecorating in our Gig Harbor living room.  We’ve hung the self-portrait my son Frank did and gave to me for Mother’s Day.  Because he painted it at Clover Park High School where he’s the art teacher as part of a self-portrait unit we hadn’t known about it until the high school had an art festival.  I was stunned by how accurate the picture was.  It reached out and grabbed my heart and I asked him if I could pay to get a print made. 

Imagine my surprise when I returned from celebrating Mother’s Day with my mother to find the painting propped on my pillow.  Tears came to my eyes and I was touched that Frank & his wife Ana were letting me be the custodian of the picture.  Naturally it will go back to them someday, but in the meantime it has been sealed, framed, and digitally scanned so I can get copies made.  My mother is first in line for that!

So today down came a painting Conrad Frieze, my father, did for my mother of my grandparents’ beach house in Seaview.  I don’t think my father would mind.  We are only moving the picture from over the fireplace to another wall.  Frank inherited his artistic talent from his Papa and honed it from early in his life.  An aeronautical engineer, my father didn’t begin his painting life until he was in his 40s.  Frank picked up a pencil when he was two and has never put it down. 

Once when Frank was a little guy he went to spend a week or so with Papa at Sandy Point.  Frank was never without paper in hand.  He did a drawing for Papa of a model of a PBY that hung from the den ceiling.  What impressed my father was that Frank drew the PBY from the top—every accurately—even though he could only see it from the bottom and side.  I know my father would be proud of Frank’s talent and glad that he’s passing it on to students.

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