**click illustration to enlarge**
(watercolor illustration on paper, 8X10, 2005)
"Wine, love and a Siamese cat"
I began reading literature glorifying love, romance and longing at an early age. The books I read in turn influenced what I wanted to paint. I started depicting couples in love way before most kids would conceder it an interesting subject. I, on the other hand, cherished the time I could spend creating my imaginary lovebirds. I wrote their love stories as I painted, and dreamt that one day I'll have an extraordinary love story of my own. Quite naturally, my characters and the complexity of their romances have evolved significantly over the years and the story-lines became more complicated as I myself was getting more experienced in such matters.
While I was painting the 1920's couple in this particular illustration I imagined the man as a quiet reflective type. I envisioned the woman as creative and artistic. He carries a certain sadness in his heart and she initially became interested in him because she was intrigued by its source. They met at a party thrown by an eccentric famous writer. She liked his eyes. He fell in love with her after he found out that her favorite short story is the same as his - The Gift of the Magi. He is soft-spoken and takes his time to express his thoughts. He wants her to be able to understand how he really feels. She likes listening to him, but often gets distracted by his melancholic eyes. It'd take two more years of long conversations and Cabernet Franc before he'll propose to her. It'll happen on a day when Baby Vamp, her Siamese cat will have her fourth litter.
"Put your hand on a hot stove for a minute, and it seems like an hour. Sit with a pretty girl for an hour, and it seems like a minute. That's relativity."
"Romantic love is mental illness. But it's a pleasurable one. It's a drug. It distorts reality, and that's the point of it. It would be impossible to fall in love with someone that you really saw."
"Love is a fire. But whether it is going to warm your heart or burn down your house, you can never tell."