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Archive for the ‘Life Along the Way’ Category

Abraham Lincoln’s Thanksgiving Proclamation – On Thanksgiving, We Gather and Remember

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Thanksgiving1The following is Abraham Lincoln’s Proclamation of Thanksgiving in Washington, D.C. on October 3, 1863
written by Secretary of State William Seward

By the President of the United States of America, A Proclamation.

The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added, which are of so extraordinary a nature, that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever watchful providence of Almighty God. In the midst of a civil war of unequaled magnitude and severity, which has sometimes seemed to foreign States to invite and to provoke their aggression, peace has been preserved with all nations, order has been maintained, the laws have been respected and obeyed, and harmony has prevailed everywhere except in the theatre of military conflict; while that theatre has been greatly contracted by the advancing armies and navies of the Union. Needful diversions of wealth and of strength from the fields of peaceful industry to the national defence, have not arrested the plough, the shuttle or the ship; the axe has enlarged the borders of our settlements, and the mines, as well of iron and coal as of the precious metals, have yielded even more abundantly than heretofore. Population has steadily increased, notwithstanding the waste that has been made in the camp, the siege and the battle-field; and the country, rejoicing in the consiousness of augmented strength and vigor, is permitted to expect continuance of years with large increase of freedom. No human counsel hath devised nor hath any mortal hand worked out these great things. They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God, who, while dealing with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy. It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged as with one heart and one voice by the whole American People. I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens. And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to His tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquillity and Union.

In testimony whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Seal of the United States to be affixed.

Done at the City of Washington, this Third day of October, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, and of the Independence of the Unites States the Eighty-eighth.

By the President: Abraham Lincoln

William H. Seward, Secretary of State


Portrait Painting in Watercolor Workshop with Misuk Goltz

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portrait painting watercolor misuk goltz

This was a really fun three-day workshop!  There were almost 20 people in the class, and everyone was so friendly and generous with their paints and ideas and treats! I call this “watercolor hospitality”!

It has been almost 40 years since I created portraits and that was mostly with an HB pencil. This workshop was just what I needed to get me going again! Misuk was a delightful, beautiful, fun person to be with. Here is what I learned from her:

• It’s o.k. for me to take a lot of time with each area to study the color of each tone and to be sensitive to the expression and hues. With other art forms, such as oil painting/ impressionism and line drawing, I was taught to get the entire sketch down in 5 minutes and then go back with the details. This is a great technique, but not one that I need to be locked into. In Misuk’s class, I enjoyed having the freedom to concentrate on each area for a time. This allowed me to be more sensitive to each part of the face. Misuk gave me the freedom to explore each part and take my time to “see” the color.

• The process of tracing, sketching and painting was new to me, as well as creating a value study before the actual painting to gain an understanding of the darks and lights.

• I learned new techniques for resisting the watercolor, scrubbing, glazing, variation with the composition, light and dark hues, and skin tone colors to use.

• The idea of just hinting at features and clothing.

• In the beginning, she said that we throw a lot of our paintings away. We make mistakes! I will be patient and practice!

• Encouragement – I received the foundation I needed to paint in this new page of my life.

Misuk, your paintings are absolutely beautiful!

Here is a quote I liked from the book she recommended called “Art and Fear” – “The difference between art and craft lies not in the tools you hold in your hands, but the mental set that guides them. For the artisan, craft is an end in itself. For you, the artist, craft is the vehicle for expressing your vision. Craft is the visible edge of art.”