18/30 January Painting | “Sharpened”

By | January 18, 2017

Day 18, 30 paintings in 30 days.

I have a lot of memories of busting a gut laughing with my siblings as we were growing up.

One such memory has to do with a parable about taking time out to renew and re-energize. We were in the van, listening to a motivational book on tape, as we were wont to do when my mom or dad were driving. The narrator was good. He described the scene of a man coming across a lumberjack sawing wood.

You know this story, right?

The lumberjack’s saw was dull, and he was complaining about how long it was taking to cut the tree down. The other guy says, “Why don’t you… sharpen the saw?”

And here’s where it got funny. Because the narrator, getting into the scene, huffed and puffed as though he actually were sawing. And he said, in a slightly sing-songy way, [huffing and puffing] “Because I’m too busy sawing, dum dum!”

(I wish I could say it for you here the way I remember it, because the syncopation is quite important at the end.)

We laughed and laughed and laughed! And made my dad rewind the tape over and over so we could hear it again!

“I’m too busy sawing, dum dum!”

The lesson sunk in. (After hearing it so many times in a row, it would be hard to believe if it didn’t!)

Anyway, I thought of that when I chose my painting for the evening. Writers need to take time out to “sharpen the saw,” so to speak. Sometimes that means stepping away from a manuscript for awhile to rest your brain. Sometimes it means working on a different scene, or re-writing it from a different perspective. Other times it literally means, sharpen your instruments so you can be more effective.

so… Ta da! Pencil Sharpener!

The pencil shavings indicate that the pencil is already sharpened, hence the title of the piece, “Sharpened.”



This is my first painting this month without my motivational quote in it. I had to take a break. (Did you catch the meaning? It’s subtle…)

P.S. One of my goals for the new year is to paint in January. My theme for all the paintings is “writing”.

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One thought on “18/30 January Painting | “Sharpened”

  1. Judy

    Amazing ideas. I think you have the makings for a very productive art tour after you have your show in your home. Begin to approach smaller galleries and artist supportive shops where you can or where you have friends and start having small shows. Even if you do it when you take a short trip to start with……..then work on publicity at each site or have a friend or colleague do it. 30 drawings/pieces is alot and they are tied together so well as you write. . Good luck…you are amazing!


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