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August 24, 2003: Freehand

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There is a tree on the wall in my breakfast nook.

Granted it is a very faint tree, done only in pencil lines, and right now it is a rather bare and leafless tree. But it is a tree, nonetheless. And those pencil lines trace out branches that jut ever so slightly onto the ceiling and travel just around the corner into the kitchen, and roots that leave the wall space and cross down to the baseboards.

I did not put this tree there, less you think that somehow I magically sprouted some small modicum of artistic talent. A friend of mine who is one of those incredibly artistic, crafty types of people came over and drew it onto the wall for me. My input was to sit on the stairs and watch her in awe, and then attempt to have an opinion when she wondered if maybe it needed more twigs. And my assignment, now that there is a penciled tree on my wall, is to go find a suitable color of brown and paint it.

Basically, this whole process is nothing more than a grown-up version of paint-by-numbers, I suppose, except it'll all be one color and really I just have to stay within the lines. Artistic I may not be, but I could always at least stay in the lines. It's a small and pathetic talent, but hey, I'll take what I can get. I may not be able to do this tree without a whole lot of help, but I am consoling myself with the knowledge that at least I will be able to do the clouds in the claustrophobic toilet room upstairs all by myself, and that surely has to count for something.

Labor day is coming up so I'm hoping to get the paint sometime this week and get the first part done. Then the incredibly talented friend will come back to make add knots and swirls and make it look less like brown streaks on the wall and more like the bark of a tree, and she says she will show me how to make leaves, and the plan right now is that after a few rounds of me doing the basic painting and her coming over to make it actually look nice, we are going to have one heck of an awesome tree in our breakfast nook.

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