Donna Clair

Southwest Contemporary Artist

How I Came to New Mexico and learned about Art and Life


Hunter’s Moon – view from the front portal

Llano Quemado – 19 October 2019

Some people are slower than others to understand what it means to live in the present; I was one of them!  Seemed to bounce from one drama to another this year – very little painting – until now.  This weekend a new 48″x36″ snow painting – Don Gregorio’s Winter Field will be completed.  My next post on this blog will be a photo of the canvas and the story to go along with it.  How excited am I?  I am over the Moon (no pun intended).

That Big Easel in the Sky beckoned last April.  Two months later I was packing up the house at 223 and had no idea where I would land.  How is that for living by the seat of one’s pants?  Logged onto Craig’s list one morning at two o’clock and pictures of this new studio were the first to pop up.  If I had written a list of everything I needed – clouds, mountain views, sunsets – and of course a walk-in shower – this place was eerily close to my sugar plum visions!  The landlord had to do a background check which took about two very tense weeks before I was given the green light and could give him my deposit.

Life has changed profoundly.  Little things no longer bother the way they did before and patience seems to be a regular visitor. The word “surrender” was foreign to me – not in my vocabulary – no way .   Morning words in my daily journal now end with “Today is all there is….”  

Chaos and confusion are no longer the order of the day. Beginning with my new small paintings a sense of purpose is being restored in small bits and pieces.  This place is silent and peaceful. And wonder of all wonders I am at the easel daily.  Pictures of new paintings pop into view and I can focus on the work again.  Hallelujah!  And to think I came that close to giving away my big sturdy easel and all my paints!

Last Saturday evening I put on a jacket, picked up my camera and just sat on the old railroad bench to watch the full moon rise over the foothills towards Pecos.  The more the sky darkened the moon shone brighter with every second.  I was thrilled to be here – in this place, on this planet.  What a wonderful surprise!!!!  Yes, I am slowly coming to ground one more time. How does one put “quiet joy” on a canvas?  Think I am going to give it a try!