Is there more beauty in aging ...?

... a $$$ award from the Melrose Arts Council -- pays off

from Don Norris

I wrote this story to prove my point -- that there is much beauty in aging.

The project really began some thirty years ago, when I, as a non-professional teacher of
art, got a $200 grant from the Melrose Arts Council to go down Maine and paint what I
saw. Fact is. I saw beauty every where I looked, beauty in the countryside, beauty in
the farms, beauty in the people I met.

I took my water-colors and sketch pads with me, camping in an old Volkswagen Comby --
the forerunner of the modern SUV. And I lived in that little camper for some three
weeks, wandering aimlessly through the mountains and hills of New Hampshire and Maine,
drawing and painting with watercolors, and photographing every thing I saw -- farms,
landscapes, old buildings and homes -- and talking with some hundred of the locals.

I looked for places the masters had painted, those masters of the New England, trying to
see what they saw a hundred years before. And I found it -- the scenes, the mountains,
the little towns, the people (and creatures) that populated New England. If you can
imagine, I spent three intensive weeks following the paths of the masters, searching for
the beauty they saw.

It worked. I found those scenes, and I recorded them on paper and camera -- and in my

But the point of this story is ... after I've  walked around it for the past three
paragraphs -- the point is, Which is better, which is prettier, which would you rather
have hanging in your hallway, bedroom -- or even maybe your living room?

The original photo is some 30 years old. It has been sitting in my computer(s) for a
long time. And time has played with its color: There is now, in my current copy of the
original, a beautiful farm scene, now coated in a pale yellow. The coloring is not
original. It is an old print. Both photos were put through Adobe Photoshop, the top one
was altered to eliminate the yellow shading.

I'd appreciate your thoughts.

Don Norris

April 7, 2017

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