Paintings from Visions from Two Continent Chapters 22-23

Sheila Buchanan Buell spent years working on her unpublished story about insects. Which was recreated in Chapter 1-6 of Little Six Legs, published in earlier blogs. Finally in Chapter 22, her life turns around and she is able to pursue her dream of becoming an artist. She studied painting at the St. Paul School of Art. Her husband, Dexter Buell set her up with her own studio apartment set aside just for her to paint. She painted paintings from memory of her home in Australia. This was when she painted the bamboo, mentioned in chapter 4, plus the Australia Dreaming painting that is on the cover of Visions from Two Continents. She struggled painting nudes, finally succeeding in the pastel that I will be posting in the next blog.

Bamboo path page 226

“I remember the night I painted the Bamboo. As I painted lighting flashed and thunder roared. My third floor studio seemed to sway yet the lights stayed on, and my hand never strayed from the brush. The oil paint swayed like the bamboo. In my mind I heard it squeak as it had when I walked through it on my way to school, so many years ago in Australia.”

First Attempt at nude in oil, unfinished page 231

“My first attempt to incorporate what I’d learn in life drawing into oil never got finished. I tried to paint myself and the children in the bush. I was reaching up to pick some fruit. I worked and reworked it, but it never seemed quite right. The painting refused to come alive.”
Australia Dreaming page 232 and the cover of the book. Click link to see the book.

“Bill Norman my instructor told me to loosen up. Just let the figures move with the background and become part of the painting. My mind became one with the tree as it grew and circled around the canvas. The girl bent over crying remembering her lost home. I let myself become one with the bush. I was in a state of deep meditation undisturbed by anything. I was part of the flow, the color, the light.”

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