Donna Clair

Southwest Contemporary Artist

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


                                  ROAD TO WILDERNESS GATE (Truchas, New Mexico)
Llano Quemado, New Mexico – 2 November 2019 – This painting always reminds me of the day I was lost in a small meadow while hiking to the top of Truchas Peaks with a group of friends.  So out of shape from sitting at the easel every day I was crazy to think I could climb a mountain at 60 years of age.  My shoes were soaked, I had no idea of how I arrived at this place alone – brought up all my issues of abandonment!!! Sat on a big rocky rock for a couple of hours. Thought maybe if I stayed there the rescue helicopters would find me in a day or two starving and dying of thirst! (Always a Drama Queen)  Late afternoon — just as I had decided to follow the small river back down to Truchas, I heard the sound of voices. Another group of hikers invited me to walk back to town with them.  Such relief!!!  One of the men admonished me and said “Next time find some friends who will walk at your own speed!”  Life lesson learned, forgotten and learned again many times over!Today is Saturday – slept until ten.  Always a lovely surprise to open my eyes to another day on earth! Have many things on my to do list…..gesso new canvases, organize source material begin my winter work.  Blocking in some underpaintings.  Long shower, wonderful cup of coffee – opened the window shades to another dazzling morning!  Falling back into ordinariness after all the high drama earlier this year.  Life is simple again – very quiet….no confusion.  All my work right in front of me. Adding prints and paintings to my Online Gallery for the holidays.  Planning to do a 40″X30″ painting of Hunter’s Moon – view from my portal of the last full moon.  Also some small auction paintings – I love the routine of my daily life – keep walking around saying “thank you” under my breath.  Made a big pot of vegetable soup with some Polish dumplings.  

My friend and helper, Doug Yeager, took this photo this week.  Posted it to my website – a note to remind myself that I can still do some large work….visions of more large paintings dancing in my head!  Have wanted to do “Don Gregorio’s Winter Field” for many years.  This was the view from the front door of my little adobe house the last time I lived in Truchas.  Summer, winter, spring and fall – this place was my view to the eternal nature of life – a quiet mystery. And a constant surprise…sunrises, sunsets, summer  storms, winter snows – changing every minute, every second.  Beautifully framed, this painting now hangs on my studio wall.  It is not quite the same as being there, but in completing this canvas I was able to emerge from the wilderness one more time!