Sunday, May 12, 2013

P. B. Schmodey Bones

This is my Mom. She knit that mustache herself, along with an assortment of disembodied eyeballs, a teapot covered in bees, a plant that can see, and a dissected frog (complete with accurate knitted internal organs). She also knitted the fingerless gloves I often wear while drawing, and even designs some of her own patterns.

She raised my two older brothers and myself on Star Trek, Bill Nye, David Attenborough documentaries, the entirety of Monty Python's Flying Circus, and a respect for science. She read me the Borrowers and Anne of Green Gables when I was small, and lent me Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and Imzadi when I was old enough.

As a child you don't understand the scope of how overwhelming raising kids must be. Now as an adult, having gone through more of life's snags, I am massively impressed with the upbringing I was fortunate to have. We were and are well loved and educated.

While sketching this portrait I was struck by how strongly my mother's facial structure reminded me of my own, but when I was in the middle of painting her she reminded me more of my grandmother. Does anyone know for sure that actual meiosis and genetic recombination took place here or do the women in my family perform mitosis and just kind of bud off? It was an interesting experience.

In any case that bodes well, because at 57 my mom seriously looks more like a woman in her early 40s. Though I am sure a lot of that can be attributed to her passion for riding bicycles and her ability to cook delicious healthy food. She's an active and intelligent lady.

For some mysterious reason my eldest brother, Adam, decided to call her "P. B. Schmodey Bones". No-one knows what this means but to this day all three of us often still refer to her as Schmodey. She tolerates this gamely. She also currently lives with eight cats yet manages to keep the house impossibly clean. This is inherently important information because cats. Basically she's a pretty awesome mom.

This is the photo I referenced when painting this portrait. Real life Schmodey is way more excellent than my faux studio recreation, you can't actually imitate that degree of mom-awesome. But I thought it might be a nice way to wish you a Happy Mother's Day regardless. Love you, Mom!

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