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Painting from Life

– tekijä: Anne Brooke

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BOOK BLURB:
Love is never what you think. When a painter goes beyond the degree of intimacy that provides the connection between him and his newly-discovered muse, he is forced to undergo a re-evaluation of the true meaning of love. In a strange twist on the Dorian Gray theme, perhaps the artist steals the subject's essence as love and art meld into one.

BOOK REVIEW:
This short story is lyrical, fluid, and quietly unsettling; the style perfectly suited to its subject ~ an artist's obsession, the end of a marriage, the evolution of a relationship between elderly Peter and the unnamed protagonist that defies classification. That relationship is intense, deep-rooted, life-changing, but every attempt to label it is rejected ~ the artist denies that it is sexual, Peter denies that it is filial, but the two of them are drawn together, their lives entwining to the exclusion of everything and everyone else.

(Originally reviewed for Rainbow Reviews - http://www.rainbow-reviews.com/?p=1395) ( )
  AlexDraven | Dec 30, 2010 |
Painting from Life is a story of obsession, like it should be when you are talking of art, since only a work born from an artist who suffered to create it is worthy of that name. But in a almost Dorian Gray's twist, the artist of this short story takes strength from his art while his muse is slowly dying.

The artist (without name since this is a first point of view perspective) is an unhappy married man and a struggling artist; probably the struggle for his art also caused the problem in his marriage, in a way or the other, he never seems able to reach that bliss an artist feels when he knows that he is doing something wonderful, at least at his eyes. And then, during a weekend in a seaside village he is spending with his wife trying to patch their marriage, the artist sees a very old man sitting in a bench in front of the sea; the combination of the interior loneliness of the artist, with the loneliness of the shore out of season, and the loneliness of that old man, all of them push the artist to ask the man to be his model for a day. But the artist already knows that the obsession is started and the positive answer that first paintings received is only an incentive for the artist to ask for more. I believe that, even if it was a flop, in any case the artist would have asked to Peter (this is the name of the old man) for more. In his artistic frenzy, the artist doesn't realize that Peter is dying and that being his model is only heightening his distress and probably fast pacing his decline.

On the other hand the beginning reluctance of Peter slowly dissipates, since he already knows that he has grasped all the life has to offer to him, and what few remains, he can give it to the artist. Peter is not searching for a friend or companionship to fill the void of loneliness, he is already at peace with life, he maybe only wishes to end it as it's without further changes. And so at first, maybe he sees the artist as an intrusion in his life, but then he understands that the man needs him, way more than Peter needs him, and he willingly gifts the artist with all of him, from his body (but only for an artistic purpose) to his remaining life force. From Peter's side it's not love, neither a love for art, it's more maybe a fatherly thing; from the artist's side, I don't know, maybe it's love, but that type of love that borders in obsession and that doesn't allow you to see the thing from a right perspective, everything is distorted to justify what you want to see. For now, Peter and the artist's relationship is perfect, at least from the artist's point of view, the problem will arrive when life will ask his toll on Peter.

http://www.amazon.com/dp/1926647874/?tag=elimyrevandra-20
  elisa.rolle | May 10, 2009 |
Painting From Life by Anne Brooke
http://www.eternalpress.ca/paintingfromlife.html
Sweet, GLBT, 5,000 words
$2.50 US
Heat Rating: 1 Flame
Cover Art © 2009 by Amanda Kelsey
Edited by Gaye Walton
Copyedited by Erin Cramer
Layout and Book Production by Ally Robertson
Book Trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uThzXk6TdJI
ebook: 978-1-926647-79-1
print: 978-1-926647-87-6

Summary:

Love is never what you think. When a painter goes beyond the degree of intimacy that provides the connection between him and his newly-discovered muse, he is forced to undergo a re-evaluation of the true meaning of love. In a strange wist on the Dorian Gray theme, perhaps the artist steals the subject’s essence as love and art meld into one.

Excerpt:

At the corner of my eye, something moved and I turned to see what it was. Fifty or sixty yards away from us on the edge of the sand, an old man was sitting on a bench, gazing towards the sea. The sound we were making must have caused him to jump and the movement startled me. Now his eyes were meeting mine, causing a jolt of recognition, even understanding, to explode in my heart. No, somewhere deeper. In my belly, from where it surged in a torrent of blood down through my legs and feet, and up into my chest, arms, fingers and at last into my mind. I felt as if I might faint. But I didn't. Instead I gazed at him in astonishment.

He was old, a thin wiry body wrapped in a green fisherman's jumper, faded cords protecting his legs. His hands were gnarled like the rocks, strong fingers burnt brown by the sun. But it was his face which captured me, even at such a distance, and never really let me go. ( )
Useat käyttäjät ovat merkinneet tämän arvostelun käyttöehtojen vastaiseksi eikä se ole enää näkyvissä (näytä arvostelu).
  EternalPress | May 8, 2009 |
näyttää 3/3
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