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Andries Louw Novian Lyric Mikayla Mackaness

There are not many words here. More photographs. With Andries Willem Stefanus Louw and Novian Lyric Castellano Mackaness: A South African, Costa Rican, and a Montserratian creating in Costa Rica. And moving about…



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Hannali and I met in high school. She walked straight up to me in a hall filled with teenagers fluttering semi-madly from one boxed in class to another and said, ‘I like your style.’ I said thank you. And she continued to ask me what I was up to…

That was 15 years ago. We’ve been the best of friends ever since.

She’s the friend where, in every space we were out and about, we were crazy-happy-silly all of the time. Yes, all of the time. From impromptu bridge opening parties, making our own clothes, batik, to silly singing to a stranger, we knew how to make a go out of every moment. We got, ‘Are you two on drugs’ a lot? Which was simi-sad for me, because what that meant was that the culture we resided knew how to have a good time, intoxicated. We would smile, ‘Nope.’ We just enjoyed and kept making smiles. One of my favourite memories together was turning my living room in Thailand into a dance studio for choreographed dancing lessons she would give to the village. That was a fun-fun-fun happy and fruitful-in-Love ministry. Going to Ko Phi Phi was special too. Truly. Hannah+Mikayla equals, well a ton of laughter and gathering others into that joy.

We also both came to have a faith in the God of Love within the first year of knowing one another; Which was beautiful to no end. And precious to share this hope.

I miss her. She lives in Winston Salem, N.C., with her hubby and three children.

This painting was made in her driveway with Breeze and Zav crawling all over her while she attempted to pour into a piece. I Loved creating with her, 17 December 2011. She made the last stroke and was sad I was calling time to make it to Ohio for a children’s play. I was sad too, we could have worked on this piece for hours more, together. She stepped back and said, ‘I really like it.’ Her hubby did too, proud to show it off. Hannah is one of the more creative women I know. And I am honoured to have shared half of my Life knowing her move.

Again, I miss her. And, I Love her so much.

She is a smile.

Hi! It was 11.11.11 and we painted at 11:11 p.m.. You’ve got to appreciate that, yes? Please appreciate that with me. Someone’s got to. Smiling.

We went on the dock on Mamma Mia’s abode on Johns Island, S.C. 29455. I invited Melanie Spinks and Nathan Pollard over for a little painting. Nathan wanted to stargaze. Not many stars are out during a just-past-full-moon evening. Just saying.

The dock is long, I mean imagine a very long narrow dock. To get to the dock, you must move through forest. It was a venture at night. We had three flashlights, but I kept insisting that if they just turned the things off, our eyes would adjust to the moonlight. Not sure if they didn’t beleive me, if I am wrong, or if they just enjoyed blinding me when I turned around to see how they were going.

We sat down at the end of the pier and arranged the brushes, paints, fabric, etc.

Nathan thought a while. He thinks. So does Melanie. They both make fun of me because I do in the thinking. I do to think. They think, then mull, then process, then edit, then do accordingly. This may allow for fewer mistakes. To them, the act comes post thought. To me, the thinking comes during act: This makes for a pretty raw interaction and the growing with. I wonder if they are more mature. I don’t plan on changing. But they are fascinating to me. The mull.

Really beautiful conversations about the gigantic things in Life along with lots of laughter and oh no please fix the part of the painting I just thoroughly messed up, pretty please.

Nathan has been in my Life for about fourteen years. He went alongside me back to Montserrat for the first time in my adult Life. He makes fun of a lot of things I did on that trip to this day, and doesn’t mind telling strangers how ridiculous I am. Nathan, in short, is one of the most caring and honourable men I know.

Melanie brought tape and precision tools to add to the bag of paints. We used the tape. But precision wasn’t in the making for this one. So fun to paint with Melanie again. She is extremely gifted and has one the most powerful testimonies of God’s Love I have ever heard. She shared some of it with Nathan that night, which I admired.

It was the second painting with a bird in it (see the post with Melanie HERE). Similar bird too. Yes, both with Melanie. But Nathan painted this one, whereas for the other one, Melanie painted it. Of course, no prompting or talking about what we were going to do, which Nathan felt was not productive. This ‘rule’ (Melanie likes to say I break rules and give them according to my mood), reminded Nathan of some fun stories to share. This was great fruit. Then, Nathan decided to paint my hand and around my hand. It was freezing cold and the blanket we brought out had ice on it before we left. My fingers felt like they were going to break off if you simply flicked them. We got back and stuck our hands in the oven. Thawed out. The last stroke was made by Melanie.

It was a fun little to do on a special day.

Imagine two women laughing historically for five hours straight. That was us today. Desiree Prete is a blunt, cute, gorgeous, provoking, holding woman of smiles galore. And I adore her. Wait, I ADORE her. Get the point? Surely 😉

She was sporadic in her painting and used, well a lot (wait, check that, A LOT ((cap locked and enlarged for affect, indeed)) of paint). She and I drove down to Sullivan’s Island (my favourite part of the beautiful Charleston, S.C., area equaling Rockville, S.C.). She wanted to go to what she called the, ‘ugly lighthouse.’ I don’t find it so ugly. I don’t really have a judgement call for that lighthouse. She says, ‘Reminds me of a prison watchtower.’

Okay, I can see that. And there she wanted to walk to the beach. I said, ‘What about painting the sand dune?’

She noted that she didn’t want her, ‘one call’ tonight, noting the illegal nature of camping out on a dune. So, I pointed out a spot that looked like a sand dune, near a sand dune sort of situation and she went for it and positioned us away from the sun. She went to gather water in the waves and I laid out the brushes and the paint. And we started.

Background: Desire had just gotten back from work. She is a copper smith. Well, more she tells copper smith folks what to do and is a grand artist with her hands. She’s plum terrific. I’m just saying. If you want a good friend, call Desire. She’s picky though. You probably need to be fantastic yourself to be in her presence. Haha. That was me unintentionally giving myself a compliment. She might have let me slip by the quota. She’s forward and encouraging and absolutely a fun brunch date. Oh, and her hubby is sweet like cake. Newlyweds!!!

It was chilly. Around 5 p.m., and the sun was setting. This is One One. One. One One. The Eleventh of November, 2011.

We laughed for a good hour while she plotted gobs of paint down and I messed about. Then, we made silly photographs and fell on the sand laughing so hard, and then went out for sushi and a very complicated dessert order. We Love dessert, especially chocolate. First time ordering fried cream. And yes, of course we got something chocalate-y too. Then, we went back to the office and had a great light bulb talk, sat with a dog named, ‘Earl’ who laid his head on my feet which needed to be warmed so thank you, Earl. Then, we went on a search party flashlight brigade to find my missing telephone. If you attempt to call me, it will prove to be of no avail. Then, we hugged and went off, totally filled with thanksgiving for the together.

I beleive this painting matches us: as Melanie Spinks says of it, ‘bold.’ I beleive this word is definitively an adjective one could use to describe the both of us. Shamelessly… audaciously… bold. One thing we have in common. One space that creation made more visual today. Added, Melanie states, ‘It’s amazing how different all of these painting are.’

I am the common. They are the variable. I LOVE THEM. YOU: DESIRE.


So, yes, Desire and I laughed hard. I enjoy this woman SO MUCH. She is truly a joy, and a bright smile in my Life.

Today, 24 October 2011, I painted with the lovely Melanie Spinks. She’s a drawer… yes, an artist who I met during Spoleto in Charleston, SC this year. She was showing in one one room, and I in another. She’s one of the more brilliant women in my Life: A beautiful delight, an encouraging sister, an honourable and caring woman of Love.

Here’s a LINK.

Little bright yellow butterflies joined us, fluttering around our brushes halfway through this venture, almost as if to bless us in our creation. It was a calm, breezy, and sunlit day in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, near the river facing downtown. We started at 3 p.m., and ended at 4:31 p.m.. I made the last brushstroke, which is rare. I just happened to set an alarm clock for this one. I did so because I knew we could just go on, and on, and on… and at 4:31 when the alarm went off, I was there, putting in the last word, smiling because we were basically making fun of one another at this point, I egging her on, ‘WHAT are you doing?!?!’ 😉 She was making greatness.

She allowed it all to be sporadic, and dignified, whimsical, caring, daring and united. We spoke of Lovers and making space to create dreams, we poured into each others place in Life and it was truly an afternoon of care. Melanie has walked with me through great sorrow lately in Life, and her Love in-courage-building is truly genius: I am so very thankful for this woman and her healing presence.

If you ever are in Melanie’s presence, I recommend getting to know her, becoming her friend, blessing her in her journey. She truly is a gift to know, to share Life with. She upholds others so strongly; it’s miraculous to behold.

I honour this woman today.

I met Stuart when he came to a Spoleto Festival in Charleston, S.C., with Artists on Fire and was walking down the stairs while I was talking to Mahmood after visiting with my exhibition. He was bouncy-bouncy- excited for a business man who loves poetry and adventure. He certainly made a big first impression.
We kept in touch casually as he is a good friend’s best friend, and upon my realization that I was making way to Ohio, I decided to stop in and paint with him. This was at his condo. He made a fire. And put on reggae music, ‘See, it feels like Montserrat,’ trying to make me feel at home while it was snowing outside.
This is under the tenth time I’ve seen snow, so he gathered a snow ball and threw it at me from the porch while collecting more wood for the fire as I continued painting. Thus the photograph he made above.
He was, again, so bouncy and energetic. I had to feel out what would calm him into peaceful relaxation. Not much, it seemed. At all. He made for a fun painting gathering, positively. We spoke of relationships and family. Stuart is a very caring and outspoken man for sure, with a million thoughts coursing through his brain at the same instance. He definitely has to do, to think, and is lively as all get out. Okay, yes, and so I broke the rules by pleading with him not to dump a bunch of dark paint on the area I was working on. It turned into laughs, but I was semi-serious. I mean, truly, he was about to just put a whole mess of paint on this delicate space I was creating. I told him it would ruin my Life. This was in a silly attempt at letting him know the gravity of his actions as I laughed. It didn’t work.
Stuart made the last brush stroke which was more of a dot, really, 18 December 2011. It was a nice Stuart event. And I think that’s what Life is like when you share any time with this fellow,
‘A Stuart Event.’

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Wow, I’ve taught this class more than 12 times. Craziness. Blessed.

And I Love every student that has ever passed through this season with me.

It’s a difficult class and the end result is a total gift and an honour to share in. This is week two of their quarter. I have just met several of these students last week in this little class at The Art Institute of Charleston.

We free painted today, 11 October 2011.

Aundrea, Paul, Jordan, Stephanie, Mindy and I.

We sat in a circle on the classroom floor with the canvas in the middle of us. We talked about dogs and cats, really. And volcanoes. They brought up volcanoes. Why did they do that? I believe that a shape they painted reminded them of volcanoes. I miss Montserrat.

These five students are such strong and hopeful hearts. I am so excited about the next eight weeks with them: to learn with them, grow with them, share with them.

We free painted today to remind each other of our value towards one another, with and for one another, journeying together in this class with a reason that is invaluable. We painted for about twenty minutes and Jordan made the last brush stroke.

We decided that green was the colour of the day.

And we smiled a lot.

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Maybe he painted in Kindergarten. I can’t imagine that he didn’t. Though, he says today is his first time painting, 09 October 2011. Well, he further notes, besides walls of houses. Vince Graham sits with me in the courtyard at his downtown place of stay and looks up at me, ‘This is fun.‘ I like this man. He’s always surprising. Not that he said, ‘This is fun,’ but the way he says it, when he does, and his ‘yes,’ to experience. I enjoy conversations with Vince: A little sporadic, always welcoming, a lot provoking. Earl, his yellow lab, naps beside us. It’s a sweet fall day in Charleston, S.C.. The tall walls of the courtyard wrap us in, the fountain is playing water, we are sitting facing each other with the canvas on an outdoor table that is the exact size of the canvas (unintentional wonder) between us with choices galore of brushes and paints while the green vines growing everywhere rest us calm and cheerful. It rained a bit and pulled us inside for salmon, cheese, almonds, and crackers after a few hours. Then, we continued back as the sun broke in. We started at around Noon and ended at around 3 p.m., with Vince making the last brushstroke at the top right corner.

I’ve known Vince for a few short months now. From what I can tell, the man is fascination-and-greatness, personified. Maybe it’s too early to say that. Tomorrow he could do something crazy strange, courageously. And this would just further prove my point. Plus, if Vince reads this, he’d probably say something witty to brush the compliment back to me.

In short, I enjoy Vince’s wonder.

He’s a developer. Note this link: iongroup.com

He’s becoming a dear friend.

He likes to make noise from the top of his castle. Note this link: castlemugdock.com and play Where’s Waldo with where the canon is, with which he makes noise.

This painting is, well, so sweet to me.

Memorable: Vince would start painting his chair and become fascinated by the colour of it, and then return to the loose canvas and conversation. He noted that I had a lot of golds. I did have a lot of golds. He had to really search for the red tube of paint. I have a lot of blues and greens. I shared my colour theory with Vince. It goes like this, we are attracted (buy, pick out, gravitate toward, etc.) the colours we are wearing at the time. This was further proven in the final painting, subconsciously based in the colours we were wearing. I told Vince that my theory is fool proof. He said I was exaggerating. He’ll see. Oh yes, and I started mixing two paint colours together for my first brush stroke, and he took one paint colour in a separate tube out for his brush stroke (note: there are about 50 choices of paints in a bag with the obvious massive arrays of combinations)… my mix and his selection ended up matching exactly. Lovely start, holy middle, playful end.

I think he painted a rugby player and a fish.

Since he is basically my landlord at the office, I think I will return the favour. I’m going to frame this piece and lease my share to him for $1.99/5 years stay on his wall, with a 30 year contract and the option to renew.

I think he’ll go for that.