Okay, the short answer is, I have no idea. Where this came from.
The start: I’m thinking, there are overcast days on the ocean when everything appears to be monochromatic but is not, and I’ll paint the not to prove it and a storm coming from the sky, and that’s where this started. And the boulders, mineral, jade, Big Sur.
First, several figures occupied that central spot back to the viewer, then this woman appeared, facing the viewer but more than that… facing the geography and sizing it up and finding herself equal to it. And I’d thought of windblown clothes then no, and so there it is. She appears to have landed right there and hiked up her dress to go for a swim, feel the air and sand and sea. The closest I can get in my own head to this is: I can handle anything.
Life is dangerous, and I’m equal to it.


ocean, storm, rocks, blue, beach, water, rock, life, sky, woman, sand, gray, human, jade, courage, boulders, barbara, equal, hawksperch, sparhawk

Professional Expressionist, portrait painter, writer, children’s book illustrator, entrepreneur, and adventuress.

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  • VonMcKnelly
    VonMcKnellyabout 4 years ago

    Where the inspiration comes from is of no importance it’s the end result that matters and here we see the end result has worked out very well indeed.

  • Many thanks, Von. Of course you’re right, I imagine I was trying to explain it to myself.

    – Barbara Sparhawk

  • PrairieRose
    PrairieRoseabout 4 years ago

    I just love everything about this work dear Barbara………..
    This beautiful lady is open to anything coming her way…………..
    I also always love your sense of colour………..
    Simply marvelous Darlin’………………xoxoxoxo

  • Hey my friend Prairie-girl!! Miss you. Getting internet at the gallery at the end of the month so gird your loins for a flood of comments and email. I miss you, your work, hearing about your progress. And thanks so much for stopping to look at this painting, and speak so beautifully about it. XXOO to you, darlin’.

    – Barbara Sparhawk

    KEITH R. WILL...about 4 years ago

    nice work

  • Thanks, Keith

    – Barbara Sparhawk

  • NJCameraman
    NJCameramanalmost 4 years ago

    I love those “spectacular overcast” days!!! Beautiful work Barbara.

  • Very kind, Jim, and thank you. It causes quite a stir, not sure why, it’s the usual hiking the dress to head into the ocean the girls all do.

    – Barbara Sparhawk

  • Louise Cooke
    Louise Cookealmost 4 years ago

    I love your observation of “everything appears to be monochromatic but it’s not”…beautiful! Such a great energy here, both the scene and the woman who is part of it. Awesome work Barbara!

  • Dear dear Louise, many thanks. Glad you got the energy of it, the idea was that, full of life, one never knows if it’s hit the mark.

    – Barbara Sparhawk

  • billyboy
    billyboyalmost 4 years ago

    Ya know what’s so amazing about your work Barbara? It’s that you even see monochrome in color. That’s how vivid the stuff inside your head swims from your brush.
    And moreover, while anyone else would have been content to do the scene as nature painted it herself, YOU manage to convert it to humanity, AND you make humanity equal to it.
    You possess qualities of thought that transcend even your own techinical talent, and those two things mingle and interchange and work together to make you a great artist.
    And the best thing is that even if you make a fortune from your art, you will always live the paradise in which you find yourself right now.
    Awesome work from an awesome soul.

  • You made me cry, big guy. Thank you for such beautiful words, delivered at such a perfect moment, and so insightful and more than anything, kind and filled with friendship. Bless your heart.

    – Barbara Sparhawk

  • Cathleen Tarawhiti
    Cathleen Taraw...almost 4 years ago

    Yes, life is dangerous and I’m going in! The painting is so very beautiful; I wish I had lot’s of money. Bet you’ve heard that before :)

  • I have and I wish the same for me and you and everybody. Thanks for liking this painting so much. And yes, you are a leaper-inner. And thanks for facebook posting your buddy’s photographs of the horse adventures on the beach, oh my God what gorgeous, thrilling shots. You really are something. I think of the life you lead in that spectacular place and dream of visiting. We had a cold summer, now it’s a cold winter, not even a chance for half a tan. Hoping December will get hot.

    – Barbara Sparhawk

  • billyboy
    billyboyabout 2 years ago

    Wow. To my astonishment I hadn’t faved this…

  • LindaR
    LindaR10 months ago

    there is something powerful at the thumbnail that drew me in, the colors and sense of foreboding in sky & sea ~ and then there is her face, a sense of what you’ve written clearly in her expression, a strength and calm which captivated me…beautiful work, in art and thought, a treat for my day xx

  • How lovely of you, LindaR. You made MY day. It’s the most wonderful jolt out of the blue to find someone discovering and liking what I painted. Thanks so very much for your thoughtful words. Right on the money.

    – Barbara Sparhawk

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