Painting the Future

My daughters used to paint images of their future. I wasn’t wise enough to realize it at the time.

Can you remember the future? 

My wife once mentioned this thought to me which of course I didn’t understand. It was an idea I never considered. Ra El has a way of seeing beyond the conventional which is one of the many reasons I love her so much. Her own artwork is extraordinary in conveying this idea and someday a book will articulate more of her wisdom and be illustrated with her vision. 

The idea of remembering the future has always stuck with me. 

Sarah Age 3 in 1984 - is this a vision of Hawaii in 2011?
But how could the future be remembered? With all due respect to Mr. Einstein and his relatives… or his theory about relativity, the idea of a time/space continuum didn’t mean much to me except as it related to Marty McFly and Doc Brown's need for 1.21 gigawatts of energy to power the Delorean Back to the Future. (note of interest: the date in that movie that they go back to is October 26, 1985- Fanny's birth date)

Marty and Doc Brown- Back to the Future
The future hasn't happened so how could it be remembered?

But some things we take for granted would be like voodoo to someone from the past. Imagine me describing to my grandfather that I could type on a typewriter at my desk and in several minutes, the whole world could read what I wrote and you could see photographs, videos and play music too. And it isn't connected to any wires or cables...all this floats through the air. Sometime you need to take a leap of faith. Maybe the girls were remembering their tomorrows. 

The HeART of the Tropics 
I recently opened up some of my daughters' earliest albums that Poppa George made for them that held early photographs and some of their first school art. Most of these images are from about ages 3 or 4. 

To my surprise, I can see in Sarah's images the life she is currently living in Hawaii. 

These images are spirited, outdoor and filled with rainbows. Perhaps not an uncommon theme for a 4 year old girl but I can feel Hawaii in them. I don’t think I am making this up but you can see for yourself.

Hawaii is the land of rainbows, double rainbows, and even vertical rainbows. The colors and aloha spirit in these images resonate with me and remind me of the tropical breezes from the island. These images have a quality of paradise to them as envisioned by a four year old. 

Another drawing in her book captures a feeling of the underwater life that surrounds the islands. It has wonderful amoeba-like shapes and feels to me like the turtles and dolphins and sea creatures that are a part of everyday life. 

Sarah - Abstract Image from Age 4 circa 1985
Pastoral scene from1983- Artist: Sarah 

Seeing a rainbow home surrounded by bright sunlight. 

And this beautiful expression of self-love brings me close to Sarah and how she lives her life both outdoors and in service to helping children. 

Sarah's life force is evident in this image too - purple ocean in
 foreground- or maybe a dolphin. Sarah made this at age 3
Tripping the life Fantastic

Fanny is a different animal. Always has been and always will. 

Fanny loves all animals - even the dinosaur
In Fanny’s images, I see a different focus for her visual depictions. She is clearly observing animals and family and communicating both humor and heart-felt emotion.  When she was in kindergarten, the students were encouraged to write words or sentences without concern for spelling. That may seem heretical to some but it allowed the stories to flow and the joy of writing to come out. Today, as she blogs and writes about life in Hollywood, the images all connect.

Here she has captured the wit of Bullwinkle (without Rocky). Look at the expression in his eyes as if he is plotting his next improvisational line or one of his bad puns. 

Bullwinkle J. Moose
Cave Drawings from Southern France (not Fanny's)
Fanny has long been a protector of all insects and bugs. Even things she is afraid of still were part of the things she wanted to paint. Like the cave paintings of Lescaux in Southern France, there are many depictions of the animals that surrounded her either in our backyard or the back part of her imagination. 

Foreshadowing the snakes she sees on her hikes in the Hollywood Hills 
Other images of importance are of the family. This card from Mother's Day 1988 shows how Fanny saw the world and her future. Ra El, in the bikini, seems to have mermaid-like fins attached to her feet. Clearly recognizing all of Ra El's dolphin swims and oceanic connections. The depiction of Sarah with the heart in her hand shows how Fanny sees her big sister who has always surrounded her with love. As for me, I believe the black things I am holding are saute pans or cameras so this all makes perfect sense. 

This next drawing is almost exactly 20 years old since it was done on March 9, 1991. Fanny is sliding down a slide which is the ride she is currently on in Hollywood. She is by herself in this picture but is determined to find the fun in the adventure. And the persistence that it takes to become an actress is clear in how hard she had to work to get her name written correctly. Maybe she was practicing giving autographs? Fanny is determined and not willing to give up, a trait that will serve her well in Hollywood. 

I will have the slide of my life - Me sliding down a slide
Although this picture is of a school bus, Fanny never took a bus to school. I have a feeling that this is Fanny seeing herself being driven in a chauffeured limousine on the way to the set of her new film or TV show. And as Fanny would have it, the limo is yellow not black- just because she wants to stand out. 

Fanny being driven to the premiere of her movie 
Looking Back 
Maybe I have stretched my interpretation a bit about these drawings but I believe there is some truth to what the images foretell. It is also possible that I am still feeling the side of effects of last week's dental adventure. 

Both Sarah and Fanny were always encouraged to find their happiness and reach for their futures. Perhaps these images are a glimpse of their tomorrows. Or maybe they are just the lovely drawings of two imaginative children that I love. 

Once again, Poppa George gets thanks for having the patience and wisdom to put all of this artwork in an album. As Pop says, "Keep it up and you will get there". And, to my beloved Aunt Annette, who encouraged us all to be find our inner artists. I see in both of these notes encouragement for both Sarah and Fanny to keep following their hearts and seeing the future. 

Poppa George with words of encouragement 

Aunt Annette was our biggest cheerleader 

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