Lighthouse Beach, Annisquam, Gloucester, Mass. (4×6″ oil on watercolor-paper postcard)
If we consider experience like a raging sea, in the middle of the sea there is a little island with a lighthouse on it, showing everyone who is lost at sea where to take refuge, where there is dry land, where it is safe. This patch of land is called ‘now’.
Normally we think that our suffering is in the now and so we try to escape our suffering by going into the past and the future. Actually, it’s only when we think of the past and future that we suffer. The now is the place where we’re safe.
Another project I’ve been working on for quite some time, finally come to fruition (released today on Amazon). This is a board book I’ve written and illustrated with my friend Susan Lupone Stonis, who is a literacy specialist and conceived the idea of a book specially designed for reading to babies in the womb. It’s even shaped to fit comfortably over the pregnant belly!
The idea is inspired by a wealth of research that shows the many benefits of reading to babies in utero. A rhythmic, repetitive story read regularly during the last trimester of pregnancy can soothe and stimulate the baby before and after it’s born.
We’ve written it for the expectant mother to celebrate her upcoming parenthood, but the rhymes and illustrations will appeal to the baby in the womb and the newborn as well. And of course Daddy can join in too!
This is the first member of what we’re calling the Belly Books Collection, sturdy board books printed in the USA. We’re already working on a title especially for fathers-to-be, and there are more lined up for siblings, grandmas, you name it.
I co-author another WordPress blog with Susan called The Reading Womb that’s all about reading to babies in utero, and of course we have Facebook and Pinterest pages. Our Belly Books website is still in its last trimester, so I won’t share that link till it’s really ready.
So, just thought I’d let you know what’s been keeping my drawing and painting output low for the last several months. Hope you enjoy!