The Measure of a Life


The true measure of  an artist’s life is NOT

*in how many drawings one makes

*nor in how “good” they are

*nor how much money they fetch…

…but rather in a stouthearted search for beauty in everything:

*in the little as well as the big

*in the mundane and the magical

*in calm as well as chaos

*in peace and also pain.

We wield our pens to draw out the lovely contained in anything, even d’un beau affreux (the ugly beautiful).



Recently, I sat with my husband on a crisp fall day gazing into our chiminea. I caught my breath as the flames revealed a beautiful labyrinth of lines etched into the burning logs. After running inside to get my pen and sketchbook, I tried following the lines to etch them onto my paper, mesmerized as I went along. I did not expect to find beauty in a chiminea.

Even in a furnace of affliction, beautiful lines are revealed as the fire rages. We need eyes to see it and a sketchbook to record it.

This is how I want to spend my life.

Measured or not.

0 thoughts on “The Measure of a Life

    • jenpedwards says:

      You are so very welcome Jane! We all need our foundation affirmed every now and then…at least, i do. Which is why i write these things…to remind my own self. Glad it helps others too!

  1. freebirdsings/Timaree says:

    Love the painting and the sketch. I take it you are still drawing through your “affliction” then? Darn, when is it going to go away? I am so glad you are able to keep on enjoying your art in spite of your pain. I had a super food sensitivity headache for a few days this week and tried to do some knitting on my worst day – – which I then had to frog due to doing it all wrong and not noticing through the haze of the headache. Aargh! It’s corrected now and that’s good because it is a Christmas gift slipper sock and I need to hurry and get more done! That you can keep making such beauty is a wonderful gift!

    By the way, I see the cow paintings are no longer on your Etsy site. Did they sell?

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