May 28, 2021

This is Thayer, son of Davona and Lou, who bought the duplex on Raymond Ave. where I spent the happiest years of my childhood. I made this rough sketch in the spring before they evicted us. I mention this because it’s the last portrait I would draw from life. From then on I would feel like an outcast, especially when I went back to school in the fall, having, literally, been cast out—of the gifted group that went on to Miss Oman’s class. Never again would I feel a belonged—I mean belonged—anywhere. Even all my years on the West Coast have seemed like a life in exile, because St. Anthony Park—where for a time, at least, I had a family and a community—has always, in my heart, remained home. Having developed social anxiety disorder, I’ve never been able to feel really in the world again…well, except for my year in Spain. Instead I’ve felt like a stranger, standing out in the cold, peering through a window into a room where there’s warmth and light and other people busy with their lives.

Because of my sense of disconnection, I believe, when I began to draw again during my senior year of college, instead of people I knew, I drew slightly abstracted figures (what strikes me now is how much of a departure this was from my original creative impulse)—and no longer with pencil, which I could erase if I wanted to, but with markers that were indelible. 

I did, on a few occasions, draw a self-portrait, though I no longer consulted a mirror.

These drawings evolved, while I was a stewardess, into a stylized figure I used for my fashion designs, which I’ll be posting on my next blogs. (If my clothes look quaint, bear in mind this was the ’70s.)