Out of the Blue

Jana Gilmore

Joined May 2011

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FEATURED IN:
“VaVoom”

PLEASE READ THIS SHORT ACCOUNT OF WHAT HAPPENED

ON NOV. 25, 2011. THEN LOOK AT THE PICTURE AGAIN. IT’S REALLY RATHER REMARKABLE… DON’T YOU AGREE? I MISS JOELENE TERRIBLY. I STILL EXPECT TO HEAR HER CALLING OUT MY NAME IN HER SUNNY VOICE AS SHE TAPS ON MY KITCHEN WINDOW.
HERE IS THE TRUE STORY:
All day long I worked on painting a picture. As soon as I woke up today the idea for this picture popped into my mind, and I just couldn’t seem to shake it. I was obsessed with it. I did nothing else all day. I thought I was painting a depiction of depression. As I was putting the finishing touches on it, I got a phone call from a friend who is also friends with Joelene. At first he just couldn’t bring himself to tell me what had happened, so he started telling me every little thing he’d done today. I could sense from the way he was hemming and hawing that something was wrong, but I was so close to finishing my picture that I put him on speaker phone and kept working as he rambled on. “Just tell me what’s WRONG already!”, I said the moment I finally finished it and hit the “save” button.
It seems that our friend Joelene is lying in a coma tonight, and she isn’t going to wake up. She was living her life yesterday, when all of a sudden she collapsed. When they got her to the hospital they found four inoperable brain tumors that had grown so big they are now killing her. She went into a coma right after she got to the emergency room and is now on life support. It’s already been decided that she’s too far gone so they’re going to take her off of it tomorrow and let her die.
I was just stunned! I couldn’t believe it. I thought to myself, “Are you really leaving us Joelene? Please fight to come back. I don’t want you to go. I’ll miss you too much and your children still need you. You’re such a good person. You’re a caring mother, an artist, and an animal healer. You’re kind, generous, intelligent, and funny. You’re 10 years younger than I am, for heaven’s sake… much too young to die!”
An hour later, after I stopped uncontrollably crying, I went to turn the computer off. There on the screen staring me in the face was the picture I had spent all day creating. The picture shows a brain behind bars in a box, being pierced in four places! How could I have known that she was dying of four brain tumors? HOW? When I last saw her a few days ago, she was the same as she always was and we talked about what we were doing for Thanksgiving.
As grim as the picture I painted is, it’s interesting that I left one side of the box open to blue sky, sunshine, and fluffy white clouds. I hope it’s some kind of a message from (?) telling me that she’s now free from all the strife, fear, disappointment, anger, and betrayal she’s had to deal with for years. I don’t know if there’s any afterlife, but if there is she deserves to be as happy there as any being who ever lived a righteous life. She would appreciate my sharing the picture and her story with you, but I’m certain she would prefer a happier image to remember her by. So I will try to paint one, and I already know what the subject’s going to be.
Just last month we were outside talking in front of her house after a brief rain shower. Suddenly she stopped in mid-sentence, pointed at the sky and said with a giggle, “Jana, look, it’s a rainbow!” I turned to see where she was pointing, and as I did a second rainbow started to form under the first one. She got so excited that she began hopping around like a little girl. She was as delighted and tickled about it as I was. She ran into her house and got her daughter to come outside to look at it. She even brought her camera to capture it. Her daughter looked at the sky for a second and said, “Yeah, OK Mom, that’s nice.” and went back inside to watch TV. Who, besides me, would get that excited to see a rainbow… even a double rainbow? Only Joelene. So I will create a double rainbow for her, if I have enough skill to do it. But not yet. I need to be sad for a while.
We are connected to those we care about in many unexplainable ways! The picture I painted is one of them. So I’d like this global art community to mourn with me the death of a beautiful soul. She existed, she was wonderful, and now she’s gone.
Nov. 25, 2011

(I FINALLY PAINTED HER DOUBLE RAINBOW PICTURE. ACTUALLY I PAINTED 2 VERSIONS. THE FIRST ONE IS CALLED “JOELENE’S DOUBLE RAINBOW – ABSTRACTED”. THE SECOND ONE IS ALSO CALLED “JOELENE’S DOUBLE RAINBOW”, BUT IT’S NOT ABSTRACTED. IF YOU WANT TO SEE THEM LOOK FOR THEM IN MY PORTFOLIO. I’M HOPING THIS STORY TOUCHES YOU AND THAT ON NOV. 26. YOU’LL PLEASE GIVE JOELENE & I A SMALL THOUGHT. IT’S HER DATE OF DEATH, AND MY BIRTHDAY.)
Nov. 09, 2012
Image is ©Jana Gilmore
All work is copyright protected. Unauthorized usage, altering, redistribution, duplication, production, displaying, or reproduction without prior written consent is strictly prohibited. All rights reserved. All images in this portfolio do not belong to, nor are they in, the public domain.

Artwork Comments

  • Allen Lucas
  • tori yule
  • tori yule
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