Sunday, September 15, 2013

Verna's Azaleas

Oil - 9"x12"
 A couple of years ago, I painted this in honor of my mother-in-law Verna Pequette Hamilton.. She loved these azaleas, an unusual shrimp color, that bloomed in her front yard and she had given me this cutting to paint.  Verna passed away yesterday peacefully in her sleep. 

Friday, September 6, 2013

"Living Witness"

Watercolor - 12"x16"

For the first time in my knowledge, we have found proof that my great-grandmother was born into slavery on a plantation on Edisto Island.  We knew she was born on Edisto, but we were told she was Native American.  Her photo looked like someone with Indian blood, perhaps African blood too, but her slavery was never acknowledged in our family.  She and her brothers practiced the Indian ways of making medicines and salves and were renowned healers in Charleston.  Her husband (1880's) was a white gentleman from a formerly wealthy family, but was ostracized by them.  He was descended from the Drayton family, founders of Magnolia Plantation.  In their honor, I painted this "Living Witness" based on slave cabins at Magnolia Plantation. Perhaps this old tree was in place there during slavery and can serve as a "Living Witness".