A peony blooms and so did I
Nothing represents the state of renewal more than the site of peony blooms bursting onto the scene in the summer.
I first met the peony during my artist residency at Vermont Studio Center, a remote retreat for visual artists, writers, printmakers and sculptors. They were everywhere ~ like bougainvillea in the Florida Keys ~ throughout the quaint town of Johnson, where peony bushes graced every yard. Louise had a garden full of them, tucked away between the Red Mill and the meditation room.
As resident at VSC, one is freed from the pressures and responsibilities of daily life, which provides unlimited time for artistic exploration and personal reflection. An artist with this opportunity is akin to the peony: all winter saving energy, to eventually exploding in the summer, with saturated colors, from deep crimson red, shades of pink and fuchsia, to subtle white with a nuance of peach. I was in residency at VSC in June, the month that the peonies bloom. I blossomed.
My skylit studio space was filled with blossoms which sat in mason jars. The fragrant aura in my space was a contrast to the painter’s oils and thinners of my neighboring artists. The petals from the maturing blooms eventually rest on the studio floor, a photo of which could grace the cover of a romance novel.
I am reminded of that wonderful time of inspiration and renewal, especially in June, when by my friends send me photos of this year’s peony blooms.
And for my friend Juana, who chose these images for her home at Ocean Reef, my hope is that each day is as joyful, inspired, and full of renewal, as was my time spent at VSC.
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