Painting the roses, healing my soul


I woke up this morning, early. It happens sometimes when my sleep is drug induced – I was in so much pain yesterday I had to take sleeping pills last night to get any kind of relief.

I pottered around for a few hours, did some web design work and then wandered into the living room to look out the bay window, see if anything interesting was happening.

That’s when I noticed them.

The wild rose bushes had finally bloomed.

They are, unexpectedly, bright Peptobismal pink. They’d looked a deep fuchsia when they were still small, tightly wrapped buds. I had to paint them.

Our garden is a little on the wild side. We can’t even identify some of the plants – and I’m not useless at flower identification. There’s a huge magnolia bush, and 2 wild roses, some bright purple tiger lilies, forget me nots, buttercups, queen anne’s lace and some crazy tall purple things that look kind of like hydrangeas but grow really tall, not in a bush form. Then there’s the straggly purple flower that looks like it’s been shredded – we thought it was a weed, but someone down the street with a very well tended garden has a lovely bed of them, so clearly it’s not. I’m baffled. *

*So Google helped me a little bit – tall hydrangea thingy? I think it’s a fireweed.

But I digress. Basically, the garden is wild and that’s exactly the way I like it. And after yesterday’s misery (lots of pain, lots of foggy, lots of exhaustion), sitting outside in the sun and painting the roses was exactly what I needed.

Wild Roses © Sarah Marie Lacy, 2010. 8"x10" oil on canvas board

Wild Roses © Sarah Marie Lacy, 2010. 8"x10" oil on canvas board


This is actually the first plein air painting I’ve ever done. It’s not brilliant, by any means. But it was an experiment and it was relaxing and fun. It was what I needed. It reminded me that even when I feel like I’ve been mowed down by a truck, I’ve still got my art. It heals me, even if I’m reluctant to let it.

I still feel sick now and I think I’m going to go lay down for an hour or two, but you know what? When I was painting I forgot about the hurt, I forgot about the tired, and I forgot about the crap. I just lost myself in the loveliness of a sunny morning, painting roses. Those two hours of hope is all I need to keep me going.