In Painting, Recovery

19 days ago I left the painting I was working on, to go on a sunset bike ride with my husband.  A shaky start left me sprawled on my side in the street, bike on top of me, screaming in fear and pain that I’d broken my ankle.  My husband, ever the optimist told me he was sure it was only a sprain as we drove to the ER.  It was worse than I had imagined–broken in two places, requiring surgery which couldn’t be done for a week and 6-12 weeks without weightbearing.

I was beside myself.  What I lamented most was not being able to enjoy the happy week I had planned with my recently married, Nebraska residing, older daughter, who was in for the week.  As it turned out, she ended up being a great consolation to me during the pre & post operative period.

Now I am back home, getting around mostly in a wheelchair, trying to keep my foot elevated above the level of my heart.  No mean feat, let me tell you.

But I’ve little time for self pity and have a myriad of things on the agenda for this imposed home residency.  I plan to learn the guitar and a foreign language (haven’t decided which one.  Any suggestions?)  I will be working on my art business, working with galleries, getting together applications for MFA programs, drawing and painting and, of course, doing this blog.

My pledge to my readers is that I will post at least weekly, usually Monday nights, so you can take a look on Tuesday morning.  I will show you my work and that of others, talk about art and the world and generally share what’s going on in my brain (some posts may be very short!)

The painting I was working on at the time of the accident was an assignment in painting a landscape, using limited colors.  We were to use intensity (how clear or muddy the colors are) and value (the lightness or darkness of the colors) to give the impression of depth.  This painting is a scene from Central Park with the large buildings seen through the trees.  I have yet to fill the trees with leaves but rather just have their bone structure.  I have not yet painted the rock in the water, foreground.

This is not typical of my painting style but gives you idea of where I’ve left off.  My teacher, Manel Lledos shows us classical effects in landscape painting.  Once you know the rules, you better know how and why to break them.Central Park Vista -- in progress

I hope you will stay with me through my journey of recovery and growth.


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Showing 6 comments
  • Cathy Hegman

    Hey Karen!! Great blog!
    Hoping your recovery is faster than believed possible! Cannot wait to see some of the work you produce after this little accident! I will be checking in on Tuesdays!!!! Tuesdays with Karen from now on! Take care!

  • karenfriedland

    Thanx, Cathy. From your mouth to G-d.’s ears, as they say. I so appreciate how supportive you are. I’ll be thinking of you as I write!

  • Brenda from Flatbush

    I love the feet across the top border! Looking forward to the journey and our next WALK together in Prospect Park. As for a language, I’d suggest Italian–it’s the next one I want to learn, we could practice together!

  • linda

    Hi Karen,
    Are you the Karen who taught oils at Lake Garda this past September?
    I believe she/you is/are the only Karen I know at present—especially an artist.
    I was in Pat’s watercolor group.

    Whether you are or are not, I am sorry to hear about your accident. I fell my last night in Lake Garda (“luckily” it didn’t occur earlier in my trip) and broke 2 ribs. I’ve just finished my 6th week of healing and am pretty much back to normal. It was an arduous 6 weeks but I tried to concentrate on healing and did what I could—taking my two art classes—one at ASL!—helped me a lot. I did only figure drawing.

    Not as difficult as what you must be going through. Oddly enough “just” breaking ribs—if not too bad a break that is— has a beginning and an end. Thank goodness your injury is not as life threatening and disabling as Frieda Kallo’s which is not to diminish what suffering you are experiencing—just something to keep in mind. I know my accident could have been a lot worse and that has colored my perspective.

    I hope you have a peaceful day.

    • karenfriedland

      Hi Linda-

      Unfortunately,I have not taught in Lake Garda (is that Italy?). I’ve been pretty much NY based. In any event, I am most grateful for all your kind words. I too am very aware of the limited nature of my convalescence but that doesn’t negate the current challenge. Just trying to make the best of things. Hope you’ll stay with me on this journey.

      Happy painting,

  • margaret rodgers

    Feeling for you especially as i have broken my painting wrist and am as frustrated as you. Spent time on computer though ordering books and stuff so the credit card is suffering too. love your shoes Get well soon so you can wear them.

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